Subprime lender Delta Financial, Woodbury, N.Y., has delayed its second-quarter earnings release and conference call, set for Wednesday, Aug. 8, a move that sent its shares down 40% in trading on the day.The nondepository lender had hoped to report earnings before the market opened Wednesday. The delay was posted on its website, with no further details provided. Shortly before MortgageWire's deadline, Standard & Poor's issued a statement saying it had lowered its ratings on five classes of asset-backed securities from Delta transactions. S&P said the lower ratings reflect "[m]onthly net losses that have exceeded monthly excess interest cash flow." On Wednesday, Delta's shares fell $3.20, or 40%. The company can be found on the Web at http://www.deltafinancial.com.

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