Moody's to Add Plus and Minus

Because the significant increase in the number of rated servicers and the amount of data these servicers provide to rating agencies, Moody's said it is adding "plus" and "minus" signs to its servicer quality ratings.

When added to the SQ ratings, the new modifiers will indicate that services with a plus sign rank at the higher end of the designated rating category and servicers with a minus sign rank at the lower end of the category. SQ ratings are on a scale of one to five, with one indicating a strong servicer and five a weak one.

The rating agency said this move will bring "more transparency to the marketplace and give investors the ability to compare servicers' strengths and weaknesses with greater accuracy."

The change applies to Moody's SQ ratings across all asset classes within the asset-backed securities and residential mortgage-backed securities sectors. It applies to all markets globally.

Moody's currently rates more than 40 servicers. The new modifiers will be incorporated to ratings at the time of each servicer's next annual review.

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