July 26, 2011 / 5:38 PM / in 7 years

S&P, Moody's execs to testify before Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Executives from rating agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service are scheduled to testify on Wednesday on attempts to reform the credit rating industry and the role it is playing in the U.S. debt ceiling debate.

A House Financial Services subcommittee said on Tuesday Deven Sharma, president of McGraw-Hill Cos Inc unit Standard & Poor’s, and Michael Rowan, global managing director for the commercial group at Moody’s Corp’s Moody’s Investors Service, will appear before the panel.

U.S. lawmakers are trying to close in on a deal to raise the $14.3 trillion U.S. debt limit by August 2 and avoid a credit default.

President Barack Obama warned in a televised address late on Monday that defaulting on U.S. debt obligations would be “a reckless and irresponsible outcome” to the stalemate in Washington. He called for a “fair compromise,” and said a temporary extension of the debt ceiling would not solve the problem.

House Speaker John Boehner, the top Republican in the House, followed Obama with a televised response. He agrees the United States cannot default on its debt obligations, but says the American people will not accept an increase in the debt limit without significant spending cuts and reforms.

Sharma was named president of S&P in 2007, five years after joining McGraw-Hill in 2002. He was executive vice president of S&P’s investment services and global sales division and prior to that executive vice president of global strategy at McGraw-Hill.

Rowan oversees Moody’s management of the relationships with existing issuers, business development and strategic planning. He joined Moody’s in 1996 as a senior analyst for leveraged finance from the corporate banking division of Bank of America.

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