Fitch is downgrading its ratings on Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway, ahead of the company's planned acquisition of Burlington Northern Santa Fe.
In a news release on its web site (free registration required), Fitch says it is concerned about the deal's effect on Berkshire's "asset profile, capitalization, and interest coverage" as the company sells $8 billion in notes to help finance its purchase.
Fitch also has "ongoing concerns with the BRK organization's significant equity market exposure."
Fitch's IDR (Issuer Default Rating) for Berkshire goes to AA- from AA+. It also removed the "Rating Watch Negative" it put on Berkshire last November after the BNSF deal was announced. The "Ratings Outlooks" are now "Stable."