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Wall Street slides on reports of euro zone downgrades

Friday, January 13, 2012
(Reuters) - Stocks tumbled on Friday after news reports that Standard & Poor's would downgrade credit ratings on several euro-zone countries.

Among the reports about downgrades, French daily Les Echos reported that S&P will cut the credit ratings of Italy, Spain and Portugal by two notches and downgrade France and Austria by one notch. S&P wouldn't make any changes to ratings for Germany, the Netherlands, Finland and Luxembourg its adjustment of euro zone sovereign ratings, the newspaper said. The announcement is expected around 4 p.m.

S&P declined to comment.

"If Germany is downgraded, then that would be a game changer, but the countries that are being talked about were pretty much expected," said James Dailey, portfolio manager of TEAM Asset Strategy Fund in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

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