Several French banks have had their credit scores cut due to their exposure to the ongoing eurozone debt crisis.
Leading ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) announced yesterday (25 October) its decision to downgrade the figures attached to a number of the country's leading financiers, including BNP Paribas.
Meanwhile, ten other banks - such as Credit Agricole and Societe Generale - have had their ratings placed on negative outlooks as France continues to struggle with a number of financial issues, including its overheated property market.
"The economic risks under which French banks operate have increased in our view, leaving them moderately more exposed to the potential of a more protracted recession in the eurozone," S&P explained.
Over the course of the last 12 months, lenders in France have attempted to reduce their involvement in peripheral euro area economies such as Greece, but its heavy exposure to Italy - which has fallen into a period of recession - is sapping strength from the industry.
By Claire Archer