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Leading US financial ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has cut its long-term investment evaluation of shares in Europe’s biggest powered two-wheeler manufacturer Piaggio to B-plus from BB-minus.

S&P said this downgrade was based on the Italian group’s worsening operating performance and it also reflected the fact that Piaggio was unlikely to improve credit ratios from their low points in 2013 while declining market shares were weakening its business risk profile. However, the agency added that it maintained a stable outlook on the stock, given that its position in emerging markets should gradually improve.