Moody’s Cuts Six Euro Nations

Mark Lennihan / AP Photo

A sign for Moody's Corp. is shown Aug. 13, 2010 in New York. Moody's Investors Service is a credit rating agency.

Just when you thought things were getting better for Europe financially, Moody’s is here to scream, “Not so fast!” The investor service cut the ratings of six countries Monday—Spain, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Malta—and downgraded Austria, France, and the U.K. from Aaa ratings to “negative.” Moody’s said the changes were because of the euro’s prospects for “institutional reform of its fiscal and economic framework.” Moody’s is the first ratings firm to say that the U.K.’s rating is at risk, and joins the agencies Standard & Poor’s and Fitch for mass downgrades of European countries.