“These errors make us look either incompetent at credit analysis or like we sold our soul to the devil for revenue, or a little bit of both.”

A Moody’s managing director responding anonymously to an internal management survey, September 2007.

The housing mania was in full swing in 2005 when analysts at Moody’s Investors Service, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious credit-rating agency, were pressured to go back to the drawing board.

Moody’s, which judges the quality of debt that corporations and banks issue to raise money, had just graded a pool of securities underwritten by Countrywide Financial, the nation’s largest mortgage lender. But Countrywide complained that the assessment was too tough.

The next day, Moody’s changed its rating, even though no new and significant information had come to light, The Reckoning - Debt Watchdogs - Tamed or Caught Napping? - Series - NYTimes.com

All this, years after nationwide realtors, assessors and tax assessors began a campaign to consisently overvalue housing, for their own and tax base benefits.

Or haven't you noticed?

After reading the whole article, seems to me these guys at Moody's did sell their soul to the devil.

What's your take?


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