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Moody's downgrades six European countries

Moody's cut the credit ratings of six European countries on Monday including Italy, Portugal, and Spain amid worries about the continent's debt crisis.

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Fitch Ratings downgraded five eurozone nations including Italy, Spain, Belgium, Slovenia and Cyprus on January 27, 2012. (PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Moody's Investors Service cut the debt ratings of six European countries including Italy, Spain and Portugal and revised its outlook on the UK and France, Bloomberg reported.

Italy, Malta, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain were all downgraded, CNN Money reported.

Meanwhile three other countries -- Austria, France and the United Kingdom -- had the outlook on their current AAA ratings changed to "negative."

Spain was downgraded to A3 from A1 with a negative outlook. Italy was downgraded to A3 from A2 with a negative outlook and Portugal was downgraded to Ba3 from Ba2 with a negative outlook, Moody’s said.

More from GlobalPost: Italy, Spain credit rating downgraded by Fitch

Britain reacted to the news Monday saying it must keep its promise to slash its large budget deficit, Reuters reported.

"This is proof that, in the current global situation, Britain cannot waver from dealing with its debts," Chancellor George Osborne said.

"Moody's are explicit that it is only the government's 'necessary fiscal consolidation' that is stopping an immediate downgrade, which would happen if there were any 'reduced political commitment to fiscal consolidation including discretionary loosening''" Osborne said.

More from GlobalPost: Greece’s Sisyphean struggle continues

Monday's credit downgrades follow similiar European rating cuts by Fitch and Standard & Poor's.

The move comes after the Greek Parliament voted to approve a $170 billion package of austerity reforms aimed at securing a bailout for the nation.
 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/120213/moodys-downgrades-european-countries