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Title: Credit rating agencies : regulatory changes and market participants' perspectives
Author: Ndlovu, Tabani
Awarding Body: Oxford Brookes University
Current Institution: Oxford Brookes University
Date of Award: 2013
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The lack of regulatory oversight on Credit Rating Agencies (CRAs) has for a long time been viewed as an anomaly, particularly as CRAs were perceived to wield unfettered power, sanctioning the flow of funds between investors and borrowers in global securities markets. The regulatory void was in contrast to the heavy reliance on credit ratings by regulators in determining minimum capital adequacy requirements for banks and other depository institutions. CRAs and other information intermediaries were said to have failed in their information intermediary roles, possibly causing various corporate collapses and exacerbating calls for regulation. Various scholars and practitioners argued that the lack of CRA regulation caused a number of legacy problems which allegedly compromised CRAs’ objectivity and independence in their information intermediation roles in the global securities market. The commonly touted legacy problems included lack of competition in the ratings market; conflicts of interest arising from the issuer-pays model; opaque rating methodologies as well as lack of accountability among CRAs. Following the 2007-8 global financial crisis where CRAs allegedly failed to provide timely rating adjustments to deteriorating securities, the European Commission (EC) gazetted the 2009 regulations to stem the legacy problems in CRA operations and prevent further crises in the European Union (EU). Rather than quell concerns on the operations of CRAs, the new regulations triggered further academic debates regarding their motivations, purpose, impact, timing and effectiveness. It was not clear whether practitioners working with credit ratings shared the emerging concerns. This study was conducted to gauge the views of practitioners working with credit ratings on the perceived impact of the EC regulations. The study took an interpretivist approach, employing semi structured interviews. Study participants were initially selected purposively and subsequently snowballed from four groups comprising issuers, institutional investors, CRAs and Other Interested Parties. The study adopted a metaphorical data analysis approach, using the endogenous regulation theory to conclude that there was a disconnection between the regulators and those regulated. It was noted that some regulatory conceptions lacked practical relevance and could detrimentally affect market operations. The study made various contributions to practice, theory and literature. It recommended an endogenous and more inclusive regulatory approach, fostering closer cooperation between regulators and those regulated, particularly in a tightly-closed industry where those regulated possessed more information regarding the technical nature of the industry than regulators.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available