News

KBRA Releases Report — Puerto Rico’s Independent Banks: An Underappreciated Evolution

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) releases its Puerto Rico’s Independent
Banks: An Underappreciated Evolution report, which summarizes our broad
perspective on the state of the island’s economy and domestic banks.

In the report, we make the case that in the face of Puerto Rico’s deeply
challenging business environment, Banco Popular (Popular), FirstBank
BanCorp (FirstBank), and OFG Bancorp (Oriental) are poised to produce
sustainably sound operating fundamentals based on their disciplined
business models, strong capital levels, as well as durable and
cost-effective deposit bases.

The report discusses the banks’ appropriately cautious approach to the
country’s risks, lessons learned through past strategic missteps, and a
favorable rationalization of the competitive environment. In KBRA’s
view, other rating agencies have been excessively harsh in their ratings
downgrades for the banks to levels that far overestimate likelihood of
default.

To read the report, click here.

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About KBRA and KBRA Europe

KBRA is a full-service credit rating agency registered with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission as an NRSRO. In addition, KBRA is
designated as a designated rating organization by the Ontario Securities
Commission for issuers of asset-backed securities to file a short form
prospectus or shelf prospectus. KBRA is also recognized by the National
Association of Insurance Commissioners as a Credit Rating Provider and
is a certified Credit Rating Agency (CRA) by the European Securities and
Markets Authority (ESMA). Kroll Bond Rating Agency Europe Limited is
registered with ESMA as a CRA.

Contacts

Analytical:
Ethan Heisler, CFA,
Senior Director
(516) 359-0975
eheisler@kbra.com

Peter Scherer, Associate
(646)
731-2325

pscherer@kbra.com

Van Hesser, Senior Managing Director
(646) 731-2305
vhesser@kbra.com

Karen Daly, Senior Managing Director
(646)
731-5044

kdaly@kbra.com

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