Standard & Poor's restores Irish sovereign debt A rating

Credit ratings agency Standard and Poor's has restored an A rating to Irish sovereign debt.

It is the first major ratings agency to upgrade Ireland from BBB+ to A-.

It cited an improved outlook for economic growth and a better outlook for the repayment of government debt.

It also noted the faster pace at which the National Assets Management Agency (Nama) is paying down its debt. The credit rating agency said the outlook was positive.

Their view is that there at least a one-in-three possibility that they could raise the ratings on Ireland again in the next two years.

The upgrade has been welcomed by Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan who said it was a "very positive development".

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