Both Standard & Poor's and Moody's cut their credit ratings on BES due to its ties to the troubled Espirito Santo International, which recently missed commercial paper payments amid concerns over accounting irregularities.
S&P took its long-term counterparty credit rating on BES to B+ from BB-.
Moody's lowered its long-term debt ratings on BES to B3 from Ba3, and its long-term deposit ratings to B2 from Ba2.
Both agencies also downgraded related debt instruments, and said that additional downgrades could be forthcoming.
The trouble in Portugal has investors on edge, but US markets were stable today.
The S&P 500 (INDEXSP:INX) closed up 0.2% at 1,967.57.
The Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) fared better, rising 0.4%. The tech-heavy index was pulled up by Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), which rose 5.6% to $346.20.
On Thursday evening, e-commerce company ChannelAdvisor (NYSE:ECOM) said that Amazon's sales rose an estimated 34.4% in June, a notable acceleration from May.
EBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) also showed an improvement, and that stock was up 2.3% on the news.
In domestic-earnings news, banking giant Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) reported in-line second-quarter earnings and slightly-better-than-expected revenues. However, the stock sold off over concerns about the company's ability to continue generating profits through reserve releases.
Industrial equipment seller Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) fell 4.2% to $46.15 after delivering its own second-quarter numbers. Its earnings were in line, but revenues fell short of Wall Street's expectations, and the company announced store closings.
Monday's Financial Outlook
Citigroup (NYSE:C) will report earnings before the open on Monday. There are no US economic data releases on schedule, but overseas, Japan and Eurozone Industrial Production numbers will be issued.
Volatility ticked up just a bit this week, and the most likely catalyst for a follow-through is additional BES trouble.
However, in recent years, the market has shrugged off many similar situations, and it's possible that the troubles in Portugal will be largely overlooked within the grand scheme of global markets.
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