Sony, Panasonic credit ratings cut

Sony and Panasonic, the Japanese electronics makers reeling from record losses, had their credit ratings cut to junk for the first time by Fitch Ratings amid slumping demand for their televisions.

Sony’s rating was cut by three levels to BB-, three steps below investment grade, and Panasonic by two levels to BB, with the outlook on both companies being negative, Fitch said in separate statements Thursday. Both companies had their short-term ratings reduced to B from F3.

After dominating the consumer-electronics industry since the 1980s, Sony, Panasonic and Sharp have resorted to cutting jobs, closing plants and selling assets after failing to come up with hit products to challenge Samsung and Apple.

— From wire reports