Futures took a nose-dive Monday following last week's downgrade of U.S.'s credit rating from triple-A for the first time in history by ratings agency Standard & Poor’s.
The agency's move to cut U.S.'s long-term debt rating to AA-plus from AAA came late Friday after a wild week for stocks—its worst in more than two years—as lingering concerns about sluggish economic growth and heavy public debt loads in developed economies hit sentiment.
S&P came in for significant criticism from U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithnersaid the rating agency showed "terrible judgment" in lowering the U.S. government’s credit rating.
Geithner said the agency's decision showed a "stunning lack of knowledge" about the basic maths used to develop the government's budget.
David Beers, global head of sovereign ratings at S&P, defended the firm's position, despite the discovery of a $2 trillion error in the firm's calculation of the projected debt to GDP ratio for the U.S.
"It is a complete mis-characterization on the Treasury's part about what happened in that highly technical discussion," Beers said. "These are large numbers...(but) even with these adjustments, the debt burden is rising so the substance of what we're saying has not changed," he told CNBC on Monday.