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Lexmark may face credit downgrading

After a move last week by Standard & Poor's, Moody's Investors Service is examining Lexmark International's credit rating.

Lexmark is currently Baa2, the second-lowest investment-grade rating offered by Moody's.

Moody's said late Tuesday that it will review that status for a possible downgrade as Lexmark announced earlier this month that its fourth-quarter earnings will come in lower than expected when they're released next week.

"That is an action by Moody's, but it doesn't change the rating at this time," said Lexmark spokesman Jerry Grasso. "This is a well-run company, and we've got approximately a billion dollars (in cash and marketable securities) in the bank."

Lexmark has linked the lower-than-expected results to issues including the ongoing economic turmoil.

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