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Morgan Stanley Notes Wrongly Touted by Raters, Investors Say

Morgan Stanley successfully pushed Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service Inc. to give unwarranted investment-grade ratings in 2006 to $23 billion worth of notes backed by subprime mortgages, investors claimed in a lawsuit, citing documents unsealed in federal court.

According to the plaintiffs, the documents reveal that what the ratings companies describe as independent judgments were actually unsupported by evidence and written in collaboration with the bank that was packaging the securities. Morgan Stanley and the ratings companies deny the allegations.