Three classes of Signal Securitization Corp./FirstFed Corp. manufactured housing transactions have been downgraded by Fitch Ratings.The downgrades were as follows: Signal Securitization Corp., series 1998-2, class A, from A to BBB-minus; FirstFed Corp., series 1996-1, class B, from B to CC; and FirstFed Corp., series 1997-2, class B, from B to CCC. In addition, the ratings on seven other classes from five transactions were affirmed. The downgrades were attributed to higher-than-expected losses that have resulted in "significant" interest shortfalls to various subordinate bonds in the deals, Fitch said. The rating agency noted that First Federal Savings and Loan Association had converted its charter to a national bank charter and changed its name to Signal Bank NA. The name of FirstFed Corp., the special-purpose entity involved in securitizing manufactured housing contracts, was then changed to Signal Securitization Corp. Fitch can be found online at http://www.fitchratings.com.

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