Standard & Poor's downgrades Cooper

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Standard & Poor's has lowered its corporate credit and senior unsecured rating on Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. from "BBB-" to "BB+."

The decision was made due to "poor near-term earnings and cash flow prospects for the tire manufacturer, which will cause credit protection measures to be weaker than previously expected," say Standard & Poor's officials.

"Cooper has reported depressed operating results during the past year and is expected to continue to experience earnings pressure for at least the next few quarters.

Standard & Poor's believes Cooper "will experience continued market share pressure because of its capacity constraints and because order fill rates are lower than historical levels."

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