Standard & Poor’s has put Spain's B+/B credit ratings on ''creditwatch negative'' as the political stand-off over Catalonia escalates. Silvia Antonioli reports.
Barcelona famously hosts Gaudi's masterpiece La Sagrada Familia but it's a family feud that is now consuming the Catalan city, and the country. Credit agency S&P placed Catalonia's ratings on negative watch following the escalation of Spain's biggest constitutional crisis in decades The Spanish Prime Minister has asked Catalan leaders to drop their plan to declare independence "to avoid greater evils" The country's economy minister also warned of dark consequences. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) SPAIN'S ECONOMY MINISTER, LUIS DE GUINDOS, SAYING: "This is generating uncertainty that is paralysing all investment projects in Catalonia. I'm convinced, right now, not one international or national investor will take part in a new project in Catalonia. And it's likely to stay that way until this is cleared up." The Spanish stock market though took a breather rebounding from a 7-month low touched earlier in the session But no doubt the bad spell of the last few days risks compromising the stellar performance posted by IBEX until then. Shares in Banco Sabadell gained some lost ground on news that the bank would discuss moving their headquarters out of Barcelona. They were followed by those of Caixabank, a bigger rival, also headquartered in the city. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FIDELITY INTERNATIONAL, INVESTMENT DIRECTOR, TOM STEVENSON, SAYING: "If we do get a declaration of independence by catalonia. And if Madrid takes away Catalonia's autonomous status then I think we have a big constitutional crisis and the stock market will clearly respond badly to that" The Spanish constitutional court has suspended a Catalan Parliament session planned for Monday during which local leaders were expected to declare unilateral independence Catalans separatists though, have proven their defiance before.