Moodys Should Disclose When A Ratings Or Rerating Was Given
Would you want to own muni bond that hasn’t been given a sniff test for 20 years? Well this is a common concern for muni investors according to the N.Y. Times “When Bond Ratings Get Stale” (10/11/09). We were not surprised by Moody’s alleged failure to monitor older ratings on many thousands of municipal bonds held by individual and institutional investors. Former Moodys’ senior employee Scott McCleskey, head of compliance at Moody’s from April 2006 to September 2008, outlined his employer’s failures to the US Congress this week and claimed that once Moody’s issues these ratings, it rarely reviews them again — leaving them fallow, sometimes for decades, a concern echoed by other former Moody’s employees. One way to resolve this glaring problem is for agencies to disclose exactly when a ratings or rerating was given.