Fitch lowers France's rating on its debt, deficit and budgeting issues to 'AA'

Associated Press

Fitch Ratings has lowered France's ratings on concerns about the country's budget.

France's government warned in September that its deficit for the year may actually go up, rather than down — as previously promised. The European Union has rules on the size of deficits and debts that members must meet in an effort to avoid another financial crisis.

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Fitch warned in October of a possible downgrade, citing France's repeated inability to stick to its own targets, much less those imposed by the EU.

The rating agency said Friday that the country's planning has hurt its credibility and its ability to absorb potential financial shocks.

Fitch downgraded France's long-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings one notch to "AA" from "AA+", keeping it in investment-grade territory. The outlook is stable.