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EU Lawmakers Back Sovereign-Debt Curbs for Ratings Companies

Credit-ratings companies will face European Union curbs on how they update markets about the quality of government debt under plans approved by the bloc’s lawmakers today.

The measures, intended to make it less likely that ratings decisions roil markets, will also give investors the right to sue if they lose money because of poor quality or deliberately distorted credit assessments. European Parliament legislators, voting in Strasbourg, France, backed the plans in a compromise deal with the EU’s 27 governments, which must now rubber stamp the accord before it can take effect.