Doubt over the monolines' triple-A-rating stability has been the subject of negative headlines since last summer. While a downgrade would have a dire effect on a guarantor's business model, particularly in the municipal bond market, which is especially dependent on the triple-A guarantee, there may be capital financing alternatives, market participants say.

This month, CIFG Guaranty and Financial Guaranty Insurance Company (FGIC) were cited by Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings as most likely to experience demands on their capital cushions, with Ambac Assurance and Security Capital Assurance (SCA) also under heightened scrutiny. Standard & Poor's put CIFG on rating watch negative.

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