S&P; Lowers Ratings for Ford, Its Credit Arm

From Associated Press

Standard & Poor's lowered Ford Motor Co.'s corporate credit rating further into junk territory, citing concerns about the company's ability to turn around its North American operations.

S&P; also downgraded Ford's financial arm, Ford Motor Credit Co. The company cut the ratings for both two levels to BB-minus and assigned the automaker a negative outlook.

S&P; said weakened sales of mid-size and large sport utility vehicles have particularly hurt Ford, which depended on those products more heavily than other automakers.

From Associated Press

* Ford Motor Co. retirees have joined retired General Motors Corp. workers in asking the United Auto Workers union to reconsider healthcare benefit cuts that were approved without their vote.

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