SoftBank Group’s share rally ends after Moody’s downgrade


FILE PHOTO: The logo of SoftBank Group Corp is displayed at the SoftBank World 2017 conference in Tokyo, Japan, July 20, 2017. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) – SoftBank Group Corp’s (9984.T) shares fell 8% in early trade on Thursday, ending a 55% rally in the stock, after Moody’s downgraded the tech conglomerate’s debt rating by two notches over plans to sell prime assets into a volatile market.

SoftBank on Wednesday took the unusual step of asking Moody’s to withdraw its ratings after it was pushed deeper into junk territory, as Chief Executive Masayoshi Son’s group battles to convince the industry of its ability to weather the economic shock caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

SoftBank has said it will raise up to $41 billion through asset sales for its largest-ever buyback to support its share price following investor concern over the outlook for its tech bets.

Reporting by Sam Nussey; Editing by Christian Schmollinger and Christopher Cushing

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