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TEXT-S&P affirms Hang Seng 'AA-/A-1+' ratings;otlk stable

(The following statement was released by the rating agency)

Oct 11 - Overview

-- Hong Kong-based Hang Seng has slowed its loan growth and strengthened its capitalization over the past two years.

-- We are affirming our 'AA-/A-1+' issuer credit ratings on Hang Seng.

-- We are raising the stand-alone credit profile to 'a+' from 'a' following our revised projection that the bank's risk-adjusted capital ratio will stay above 7% amid slower loan growth and still-strong earnings in the coming two years.

-- Our stable outlook reflects the bank's ongoing government support, its status as a core subsidiary of HSBC , and a lack of meaningful pressure on the SACP.

Rating Action

On Oct. 11, 2012, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed its 'AA-' long-term issuer credit rating on Hong Kong-based Hang Seng Bank Limited. The outlook is stable. At the same time, we affirmed the 'A-1+' short-term issuer credit rating. We also affirmed our 'cnAAA/cnA-1+' Greater China regional scale ratings on the bank.