Wall Street

AAA Assault on Ratings Agencies

How come the Democrats are giving a get-out-of-jail-free card to a guilty party in the financial meltdown? The ratings agencies—Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch—made hundreds of millions in the housing bubble giving triple-A rankings to dicey mortgages and dodgy C.D.O.’s. “Ninety-one percent of the AAA securities backed by subprime mortgages in 2007 have been downgraded to junk,” says The New York Times, in an editorial blast. Yet while everyone is calling for the heads of bankers, only vague proposals to fix the agencies are in the financial-reform bills before Congress.