Two of the leading ratings agencies, Fitch and Moody's Investors Service, have recently been actively pursuing plans to expand their activities. First, Fimalac, the parent company of Fitch, announced that it has bought out the BankWatch ratings business from the Thomson Corporation. Moody's then revealed that it has signed an affiliation agreement with the Czech Rating Agency (CRA), something that had been widely speculated in recent months.

Under the terms of the Fimalac-BankWatch deal, Thomson will acquire a 3.4% interest in Fitch. The latest move follows the acquisition of Duff and Phelps in March (ASRI 3/13/2000 p.1), and is another indicator of Fitch's attempt to be right up there with Standard & Poor's and Moody's.

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