Moody’s has warned the outlook for Germany’s AAA credit rating is negative, citing concerns of wider eurozone troubles and the potential exit of Greece from the euro.
The ratings agency has also placed the Netherlands and Luxembourg on negative outlooks in what is the first step towards a possible downgrade.
A statement from the firm said: “The level of uncertainty about the outlook for the area and the potential impact of plausible scenarios on member states, are no longer consistent with stable outlooks.”
Moody’s said there was a need for greater financial support for struggling eurozone countries from some of its strongest members.
It said in a statement: “Even if such an event as a Greek exit is avoided, there is an increasing likelihood that greater collective support for other euro area sovereigns, most notably Spain and Italy, will be required.
“This burden will likely fall most heavily on more highly rated member states if the euro area is to be preserved in its current form.”
Moody’s said there was also an increased chance that Greece could leave the euro zone, which “would set off a chain of financial sector shocks”.
France and Austria lost their AAA ratings earlier this year.