By  on December 31, 2008

As if the recession, rock-bottom stock prices and a still-skittish banking sector weren’t enough, retailers with publicly held debt could find refinancing even harder next year as credit ratings continue to fall.

Standard & Poor’s said changes to the industry’s debt ratings would be “decidedly negative” again next year. Lower credit scores can make it harder and more expensive for companies to secure additional debt. Especially cash-strapped firms might find lenders entirely unwilling to extend them a financial lifeline if their credit ratings fall.

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