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Nov. 9, 2020, 4:50 a.m. EST

Fitch lowers Saudi Arabia outlook to negative

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By Steve Goldstein


Fitch Ratings on Monday lowered its long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating on Saudi Arabia to negative from stable while affirming the rating at A. Fitch cited the continued weakening of its fiscal and external balance sheets, which has been accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic and lower oil prices /zigman2/quotes/209704782/delayed UK:BRN00 +0.16% . Fitch expects the Saudi government budget deficit to widen to 12.8% of GDP in 2020 from 4.5% of GDP in 2019, due to a 33% drop in oil revenue, a 5% drop in non-oil revenue and 1% higher spending.

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