AGRIBUSINESS, ENERGY & OFFSHORE | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Noble’s hard-hitting critics gloat after back-to-back credit downgrades

We were right all along, says Iceberg.

Iceberg Research, the short-seller which brought about Noble Group’s share price crash in early 2015, is feeling vindicated after the commodity trader suffered two credit rating downgrades in a span of just two weeks.

“The downgrade validates one of our main arguments against Noble: this company has never been investment grade,” Iceberg Research said in a statement.

Moody’s Investor Service and Standard and Poor’s both cut Noble to junk status on back of mounting liquidity concerns, although Noble has just reported a much-anticipated US$750 million asset sale.

“The decision will have an important impact on Noble’s liquidity and the perception of its creditors. This further complicates the refinancing of its debt,” Iceberg Research noted.

Noble has lost a whopping 71% of its market value since Iceberg published its first report in February 2014, in which the anonymous group alleged that Noble is artificially inflating the value of its subsidiaries.

“The financial manipulations were conducted to artificially preserve the investment grade rating. The accounting illusion is now over,” Iceberg said. 

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