TCREUR_Public/081219.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

                           E U R O P E

           Friday, December 19, 2008, Vol. 9, No. 252

                            Headlines

A U S T R I A

B & B LLC: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
BOEHI STICKEREIEN: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
DIE KANZLAI: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
L.H. LLC: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
VITA MAX: Claims Registration Period Ends January 7


A Z E R B A I J A N

UNIBANK: Fitch Affirms Individual Rating at 'D/E'


B E L G I U M

CARMEUSE GROUP: Says Oglebay Norton Refinancing Successful
CARMEUSE HOLDING: S&P Downgrades Corporate Credit Rating to 'B+'
FORTIS NV: BNP Paribas CEO Warns Backing Out of Purchase Deal


B U L G A R I A

* BULGARIA: IMF Sees Signs of Fourth Quarter Economic Deceleration


E S T O N I A

* ESTONIA: May Breach Maastrich Fiscal Threshold, IMF Says


F R A N C E

IT HARDWARE: S&P Withdraws 'B-' Long-Term Corporate Credit Rating
MHS ELECTRONICS: Placed Under Receivership by Nantes Court


G E R M A N Y

ANODIX GMBH: Claims Registration Period Ends January 12
ANTIOCH CO: U.S. Trustee Forms Five-Member Creditors Committee
CONNECTASELL GMBH: Claims Registration Period Ends January 9
GROB AEROSPACE: Gets Attention of Two Potential Buyers
HEIDELBERGCEMENT AG: Lenders Approve Loan Waiver Request

HSW FORSTBETRIEBE: Claims Registration Period Ends January 12
INTERNATIONAL FACILITY: Claims Registration Period Ends Jan. 15
MICROEMISSIVE DISPLAYS: Files for Insolvency
ST. GABRIEL GEMEINNUETZIGE: Claims Registration Ends Jan. 12
TSAR 04: Fitch Downgrades Rating on US$30 Mil. Notes to 'CCC'

* GERMANY: EC Approves Modifications to Financial Rescue Scheme


H U N G A R Y

* HUNGARY: IMF Says Financial Market Conditions Still Under Stress


I R E L A N D

ELAN CORP: To Close Offices in New York and Tokyo
SWISSCO LTD: Workers Reach Agreement with Liquidator Over Wages


K A Z A K H S T A N

ABSOLUTE TRUST: Proof of Claim Deadline Slated for February 3
AVANGARD KAZ: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3
IRTYSH EXPRESS: Claims Filing Period Ends February 3
KK-ULAS LLP: Creditors' Claims Due on February 3
KUANYSH LLP: Claims Registration Ends February 4

LAND OIL: Proof of Claim Deadline Slated for February 4
REGIONALNY AVTOBUSNY: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3
SEMEY JOL: Claims Filing Period Ends February 3
STROY COMPLECT-KREPEJ: Creditors' Claims Due on February 3
UNI TECH: Claims Registration Ends February 3


K Y R G Y Z S T A N

KYRGYZ-GERMAN ENTERPRISE: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 3
OSAKA MOTORS: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3


N E T H E R L A N D S

LYCOS EUROPE: Sells United Domains to United Internet
NORTH SEA: Fitch Junks Ratings on US$90 Million Notes
SNS REAAL: EC Approves Dutch Authorities' Recapitalization


R U S S I A

BASISBANK JSC: Fitch Holds Currency Issuer Default Rating at 'CCC'
ELGAUGOL OJSC: Yakutia Bankruptcy Hearing Set February 24
FINDSERVICEBANK: Moody's Lowers Currency Deposit Ratings to 'B3'
LEFKO-BANK OJSC: Arbitration Court Starts Bankruptcy Proceedings
MAK-DREV LLC: Creditor Must File Claims by January 12

NEMANSKIY PULP: Under External Management Bankruptcy Procedure
NIKOS-TEKS LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12
OKB-TANTAL CJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12
STAVROPOL-ELIT-STROY LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 12
TANTAL-INFRA LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12

TIMBER PRODUCERS: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 12
TROIKA DIALOG: Daimler Acquires 10% Stake in Kamaz for US$250 Mln

* BALASHIKHA CITY: S&P Keeps "B" Rating, Gives Negative Outlook


S L O V E N I A

* SLOVENIA: Commission Approves Bank Support Scheme


S W E D E N

CARNEGIE INVESTMENT: EU Commission Approves Swedish Rescue Aid


S W I T Z E R L A N D

A. BRA LLC: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Dec. 31
DORES INVESTMENT: Deadline to File Proofs of Claim Set Dec. 31
GENERAL MOTORS: E.D. Mich. Preps for Chapter 11 Filing in Detroit
GENERAL MOTORS: Will Stop Construction of Flint Factory
NEOPTA LLC: Creditors Have Until December 31 to File Claims

NUMAX FINANCE: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline is Dec. 31
TREUVERBUND JSC: Creditors' Proofs of Claim Due by Dec. 31


U K R A I N E

DAK LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
FREGAT LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 2
LEDA OJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
LIVIY LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
MEGATRADESYSTEM LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1

PEKTIN CJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 2
PROMIN LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
QUATRO-CENTER LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
SKABAT METAL: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
STAROBELSK MECHANICAL: Creditors Must File Claims by Jan. 1


U N I T E D   K I N G D O M

ADREVENUE LTD: Goes Into Administration
BELLFLOWER HOMES: Appoints Joint Liquidators from KPMG
BRITISH AIRWAYS: Sydney Court Imposes US$5 Mln Price-Fixing Fine
CHANNEL 4: Germany's RTL Eyes Takeover
G. MIDDLETON: Goes Into Administration; KPMG Appointed

HUSH BISHOPS: Names Joint Liquidators from Tenon Recovery
IMAGINE PRESTIGE: Names Joint Administrators from BDO Stoy
LONDON SCOTTISH: Taps Joint Administrators from Ernst & Young
LUDGATE FUNDING: Fitch Junks Ratings on Three Tranches
PREFERRED RESIDENTIAL: Fitch Junks Ratings on Four Tranches

RESIDENTIAL MORTGAGE: Fitch Cuts Ratings on Two Tranches to Low-B
SONAS AUTOMOTIVE: In Administration; Pwc Appointed
TRIPLAS III: Moody's Reviews Low-B Ratings on Two Note Classes
VIRGIN MEDIA: To Repay GBP300 Million of Senior Bank Debt


X X X X X X X X

* EC President Says European Stimulus Package Agreed
* EC Adopts Temporary Measures to Help Member States Endure Crisis
* Delphi Chairman Says Detroit 3 Need Pseudo-Bankruptcy
* Moody's Says Likely Scenario Is Gov't Support for Automakers

* BOOK REVIEW: Bankruptcy Investing: How to Profit from Dist. Cos.


                         *********


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A U S T R I A
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B & B LLC: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
----------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC B & B (FN 47312b) have until Jan. 5,
2009, to file written proofs of claim to the court-appointed
estate administrator:

         Hans-Peter Pfluegl
         Oberndorfer Ortsstrasse 56a
         3130 Herzogenburg
         Austria
         Tel: 02782/83553
         Fax: 02782/83553-55
         E-mail: kanzlei@pfluegl-hutecek.at

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the creditors' meeting at 10:15 a.m. on Jan. 21, 2009, for the
examination of claims at:

         Land Court of Krems an der Donau
         Hall A
         Krems an der Donau
         Austria

Headquartered in St. Leonhard am Hornerwald, Austria, the Debtor
declared bankruptcy on Nov. 17, 2008, (Bankr. Case No. 9 S
63/08z).


BOEHI STICKEREIEN: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC Boehi Stickereien (FN 252404h) have
until Jan. 5, 2009, to file written proofs of claim to the court-
appointed estate administrator:

         Dr. Gerhard Mueller
         Maria-Theresien-Strasse 8
         6890 Lustenau
         Austria
         Tel: 05577/88644
         Fax: 05577/88644-3
         E-mail: kanzlei@grabher-mueller.jet2web.at

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the creditors' meeting at 10:40 a.m. on Jan. 15, 2009, for the
examination of claims at:

         Land Court of Feldkirch
         Room 45
         Feldkirch
         Austria

Headquartered in Braz, Austria, the Debtor declared bankruptcy on
Nov. 18, 2008, (Bankr. Case No. FN 252404h).


DIE KANZLAI: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC Die Kanzlai Marketing (FN 246754z)
have until Jan. 5, 2009, to file written proofs of claim to the
court-appointed estate administrator:

         Dr. Volker Mogel
         Kalchbergg. 1
         8010 Graz
         Austria
         Tel: 0316/830550-0
         Fax: 0316/813717
         E-mail: volker.mogel@kcp.at

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the creditors' meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Jan. 20, 2009, for the
examination of claims at:

         Graz Land Court
         Hall K
         Room 205
         Graz
         Austria

Headquartered in Graz, Austria, the Debtor declared bankruptcy on
Nov. 18, 2008, (Bankr. Case No. 40 S 59/08m).


L.H. LLC: Claims Registration Period Ends January 5
---------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC L.H. (FN 213775a) have until Jan. 5,
2009, to file written proofs of claim to the court-appointed
estate administrator:

         Dr. Peter Shamiyeh
         Hopfengasse 23
         4020 Linz
         Austria
         Tel: 0732/66 73 26
         Fax: 0732/66 73 20 - 942
         E-mail: p.shamiyeh@wildmoser-koch.com

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the creditors' meeting at 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 19, 2009, for the
examination of claims at:

         Land Court of Linz
         Room 522
         Linz
         Austria

Headquartered in Au an der Donau, Austria, the Debtor declared
bankruptcy on Nov. 17, 2008, (Bankr. Case No. 12 S 96/08t).


VITA MAX: Claims Registration Period Ends January 7
---------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC Vita Max (FN 182788g) have until
Jan. 7, 2009, to file written proofs of claim to the court-
appointed estate administrator:

         M.B.L. Guenther Grassner
         Suedtirolerstrasse 4-6
         4020 Linz
         Austria
         Tel: +43 70 77 08 15
         Fax: +43 70 77 08 16
         E-mail: lawfirm@gltp.at

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the creditors' meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Jan. 20, 2009, for the
examination of claims at:

         Land Court of Klagenfurt
         Room 522
         Klagenfurt
         Austria

Headquartered in St. Marien bei Neuhofen, Austria, the Debtor
declared bankruptcy on Nov. 14, 2008, (Bankr. Case No. 40 S
67/08f).


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A Z E R B A I J A N
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UNIBANK: Fitch Affirms Individual Rating at 'D/E'
-------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has affirmed Azerbaijan-based Unibank's ratings,
including its Long-term Issuer Default rating of 'B-' (B minus)
with a Stable Outlook.

The rating affirmation reflects Fitch's current opinion that,
although both liquidity and asset quality have deteriorated in
recent months, these at present remain consistent with a 'B-' (B
minus) rating, particularly in light of the bank's near-term
funding and capital-raising plans.  However, credit risk remains
high as a result of recent very rapid growth and a challenging
operating environment, while the bank's high reliance on foreign
funding makes the liquidity position potentially vulnerable.  Any
further significant weakening of liquidity or asset quality in the
upcoming months could still result in negative rating action.

UB's liquidity position has come under considerable pressure due
to its high reliance on short-term wholesale foreign funding, a
significant part of which has been repaid in Q408, with much of
the remainder falling due in H109.  As at 13 December 2008, Fitch
estimates that the bank held approximately AZN51 million of liquid
assets, while borrowings from foreign commercial creditors falling
due by end-H109 were around AZN62 million and total customer
deposits were AZN155 million.  However, Fitch understands that the
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, a minority
shareholder, may provide significant funding to help refinance the
upcoming foreign debt and also roll over the majority of funds due
to it in H109.

Fitch also notes that the National Bank of Azerbaijan has already
provided a AZN50 million six-month loan (falling due in Q209, but
with a six month roll-over option) to UB to help with refinancing,
and may provide further funding, if required.  The AZN15 million
equity injection planned for Q109 would also improve liquidity.
However, the liquidity position remains potentially vulnerable and
is, to a large extent, dependent on the stability of customer
funding, around 40% (AZN64 million) of which as at 13 December was
on demand or had a maturity of less than one month.

UB's asset quality has deteriorated significantly since end-Q108,
as a loan book which grew rapidly in 2007 has gradually seasoned.
The level of non-performing loans, defined as more than 90 days
overdue (including principal and interest), grew to AZN24 million
at end-November 2008 or 8% of the loan book, up from AZN18.2
million at end-Q308, AZN14.8 million at end-H108 and AZN4.6 milion
at end-Q108.  Although NPLs appear to be reasonably secured, the
created loan impairment reserve (AZN18.2 million at end-11M08) may
not be sufficient to cover all future losses.  Fitch also notes
that NPLs could continue to rise and be significant relative to
capital as the loan book continues to season, while Azerbaijan's
economy is likely to be negatively affected by the significant
decline in global oil prices.

UB's capitalization in 2008 was supported by retained earnings and
a subordinated loan.  At end-11M08, the bank's regulatory tier 1
and total capital ratios stood at 8.1% and 15.1%, respectively;
however, Fitch estimates that the tier 1 ratio would have been
about 11.5% if current year earnings were included.  Given the
increased share of NPLs in the loan book and the challenging
economic environment, Fitch regards UB's capitalization as weak.
However, a planned Q109 AZN15 million equity injection (equal to
about 32% of end-11M08 equity) would provide some support, and
Fitch notes that significant further growth of risk-weighted
assets is unlikely given the funding and liquidity challenges
faced.

UB is the second-largest private bank in Azerbaijan, holding 5% of
system assets and 5% of retail deposits at end-Q308.  The bank is
a market leader in auto and mortgage lending.  UB is majority
(50.7%) owned by Eldar Garibov.   The EBRD and Deutsche
Investitions- Und Entwicklungsgesellschaft are among the minority
shareholders, controlling 15.2% and 8.3% of the bank's equity,
respectively.

Rating actions:

  -- Long-term IDR: affirmed at 'B-' (B minus) with Stable Outlook
  -- Short-term IDR: affirmed at 'B'
  -- Support rating: affirmed at '5'
  -- Individual rating: affirmed at 'D/E'
  -- Support Rating Floor: affirmed at 'No Floor'


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B E L G I U M
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CARMEUSE GROUP: Says Oglebay Norton Refinancing Successful
----------------------------------------------------------
Carmeuse group in a press statement on Monday, December 15, 2008,
said that despite difficult financial markets, it has been able to
successfully refinance part of the bank facilities that were
granted for the financing of its acquisition of Oglebay Norton in
February 2008.

The refinancing was achieved partly through a share capital
increase of EUR100 million and partly through a new credit line of
just over EUR100 million granted by a pool of banks with
whom Carmeuse is working since a long time.

The new revolver credit line is fully undrawn and aimed at
providing the group the necessary financial flexibility.

The structure of this refinancing will contribute also to the
improvement of the leverage ratio of the group.

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Oct. 17, 2007, Carmeuse North
America, a wholly owned subsidiary of Carmeuse Group, and Oglebay
Norton Company entered into a definitive agreement under which
Carmeuse will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Oglebay
Norton for US$36.00 per share, or US$520 million, in cash.

                 About Carmeuse Group

The Carmeuse Group -- http://www.carmeuse.com/-- is a leading
global producer of lime, with more than 140 years of experience
in the extraction and processing of high calcium limestone and
dolomitic stone into lime and lime-related products for
industrial and commercial customers.

Carmeuse is present in about 70 locations across Western Europe
(in Italy, Belgium, France and the Netherlands), Central and
Eastern Europe (Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania
and Turkey) and North America (the United States and Canada) and
Africa (Ghana).  Total consolidated group net turnover amounted to
950 million Euros in 2007.

Carmeuse Holding SA is the holding company for the Carmeuse Group.

                      *     *     *

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Dec. 17, 2008, Moody's Investors
Services downgraded the Corporate Family Rating of Carmeuse
Holding SA to Ba3.  The rating on the EUR250 million Senior
Floating Rate Guaranteed Notes issued by Calcipar SA is also
downgraded to Ba3.  The outlook on the ratings remains negative.
This concludes the review process initiated on September 4, 2008.

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Dec. 3, 2008, Standard & Poor's
Ratings Services said that it has lowered to 'BB-' from 'BB+' its
long-term corporate credit rating and issue ratings on Belgium-
based lime producer Carmeuse Holding S.A. and kept all ratings on
CreditWatch with negative implications.  S&P's '3' recovery
ratings on the various debt instruments remain unchanged.


CARMEUSE HOLDING: S&P Downgrades Corporate Credit Rating to 'B+'
----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that it has lowered to
'B+' from 'BB-' its long-term corporate credit rating and issue
ratings on Belgium-based lime producer Carmeuse Holding S.A. and
removed all ratings from CreditWatch where they were placed with
negative implications on Oct. 31, 2008.  S&P's '3' recovery
ratings on the various debt instruments remain unchanged.  The
outlook is negative.

The removal from CreditWatch reflects the successful EUR100
million equity increase and redemption of EUR225 million
outstanding under the bridge loan maturing on Dec. 12, in line
with S&P's expectations.

"The downgrade reflects our concerns on liquidity, and our
expectations that financial leverage, liquidity, and credit
metrics going forward will be in line with a 'B+' rating," said
Standard & Poor's credit analyst Lucas Sevenin.

S&P notably anticipate tight covenant leeway at year-end 2008 and
do not expect the company to be able to adhere to the currently
contractually agreed de-leveraging in 2009.  In addition, the
newly signed EUR107 million backup facility has a maturity of only
364 days and therefore exposes Carmeuse to new renegotiations with
banks at a time where operating trends could remain challenging.
The company generates more than 50% of sales in the U.S. and
about 50% of its products are sold to cyclical and currently
highly struggling end-markets like steel and construction.

"Our negative outlook reflects our concerns regarding covenant
compliance at year-end 2008 and in 2009, and the potential further
weakening of credit metrics as the operating outlook for 2009 is
very weak," said Mr. Sevenin.

In particular, the currently low level of steel production is a
concern, with the magnitude and timing of an improvement uncertain
at this stage.

"Our outlook could be revised to stable, if Carmeuse's liquidity
situation improves as a result of successful renegotiations with
its senior lenders offering the company a material covenant leeway
of above 15% in 2009, combined with clearer visibility on
operating trends for steel and construction.  The sale of the sand
business could be positive for liquidity, and depending on
the amount and use of the proceeds, it may also enhance the
financial policy.  That said, the proceeds could also be offset by
the loss of a cash-flow-generative segment," said Mr. Sevenin.


FORTIS NV: BNP Paribas CEO Warns Backing Out of Purchase Deal
-------------------------------------------------------------
BNP Paribas SA Chief Executive Officer Baudouin Prot told the
Belgian government that the patience of BNP shareholders over the
purchase of Fortis NV may not last, Bloomberg News reports, citing
De Tijd newspaper.

The report relates that according to De Tijd, BNP shares have
almost halved in value since the deal with Fortis on Oct. 6,
partly because of the uncertainty over the purchase of the Belgian
bank.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Europe on Dec. 16,
2008, the Financial Times said the Belgian government will review
legal options in order to push through with its EUR14.5 billion
(US$19.4 billion) sale of Fortis to BNP Paribas.

"We shall continue," Finance Minister Didier Reynders was quoted
by FT as saying.  "The government has the same aim as before – to
protect deposits but also a real will to press ahead with an
industrial solution for Fortis Bank."

According to a TCR-Europe report on Oct. 7, 2008, the Belgian
government acquired Fortis's operations in the country and reached
an agreement with BNP Paribas on the subsequent transfer of a
majority interest in Fortis.

In September, Belgium, along with the Netherlands, and Luxembourg,
agreed to inject EUR11.2 billion into Fortis after its shares
slumped amid concerns about the company's solvency.  The
Associated Press recalled Fortis bought EUR24 billion worth of
assets as part of a takeover of ABN Amro in 2007 and as credit
markets soured and Fortis' attempts to shore up its cash position
by selling assets failed, it entered an accelerating slide, and
depositors began departing in droves.

The FT disclosed that in a December 12 decision, the Brussels
Court of Appeal ruled in favor of a group of shareholders seeking
to block the carve-up of Fortis.

The International Herald Tribune related the Brussels Court
ordered a shareholder vote before Feb. 12 for the transaction to
proceed.

Fortis expected the deal with BNP Paribas to close this month.

The Court, IHT noted, also appointed a panel of experts to review
the proposed transaction and said the government would have to pay
a fine of EUR5 billion, or US$6.7 billion, to shareholders if it
sold Fortis before the vote.

Meanwhile, IHT said that shareholders of Fortis are seeking a
better deal than the one offered by BNP Paribas.

"The situation has never been better for Fortis to start
renegotiating on behalf of all stakeholders," Laurent Arnauts of
the Brussels law firm Modrikamen was quoted by IHT as saying.  Mr.
Arnauts represents the Belgian and Dutch shareholders of Fortis.

According to IHT, Mr. Arnauts said the prices at which Fortis's
banking and insurance units were sold to the Dutch government and
to the French bank BNP Paribas "were too low."

Mr. Arnauts, as cited by IHT, stated shareholders wanted a better
deal from the Dutch state and BNP, otherwise, they could consider
combining Fortis with another troubled bank, Dexia SA, or
recreating it as an insurance company.

Dexia, according to a TCR-Europe report on Oct. 2, 2008, like
Fortis, was saved by a trio of governments -- Belgium, France and
Luxembourg -- who agreed to inject a total of EUR6.4 billion in
the company.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Dexia has a profitable core
municipal loans business but is exposed to the troubled U.S.
housing market through its smaller U.S. bond insurance arm FSA.
As mortgage defaults have multiplied, worries over the insurer's
ability to meet its obligations have grown, WSJ said.

A TCR-Europe report on Nov. 18, 2008, said Dexia reported a net
loss of EUR1,544 million in the third quarter of 2008, reflecting
a major negative impact from the financial crisis of EUR2,191
million.

                         About Fortis N.V.

Headquartered in Brussels, Belgium, Fortis N.V. --
http://www.fortis.com/-- is an international provider of banking
and insurance services to personal, business and institutional
customers.  The Company operates in four core businesses: Retail
Banking, Asset Management and Private Banking, Merchant Banking
and Insurance.  The Company delivers a package of financial
products and services through its own channels and via
intermediaries and other partners.  In May 2007, Fortis N.V.
finalized the acquisition of a 50.45% stake in Pacific Century
Insurance Holdings Limited.  As of June 15, 2007, the Company had
acquired a 98.59% stake in Pacific Century Insurance Holdings
Limited.  In July 2008, the Company sold International Asset
Management Limited (IAM).

                          *     *     *

As reported by the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 9, 2008,
Moody's Investors Service downgraded Fortis SA/NV and Fortis N.V.
long term issuer ratings to Baa2 from Baa1, and the ratings were
placed under review for possible downgrade.  Debt ratings
benefiting from subordinated and preferred guarantees from the
joint holding companies were downgraded to Baa3 and Ba1
respectively.  Certain securities benefiting from joint and
several guarantees from the holding companies and Fortis ASR
Levensverzkering N.V. were confirmed at Baa3 with a developing
outlook.  Moody's also downgraded the insurance financial strength
rating of Fortis Insurance Company (Asia) Ltd (FICA) to Baa1 from
A3, and the backed senior unsecured debt of Fortis Capital (Asia)
Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of FICA, to Baa2 from Baa1.  These
ratings now carry a developing outlook.  The Group's CP rating was
affirmed at P-2 and placed under review for possible downgrade.


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* BULGARIA: IMF Sees Signs of Fourth Quarter Economic Deceleration
------------------------------------------------------------------
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission visited Sofia during
December 4-15 to conduct the annual Article IV consultation with
Bulgaria.

The mission issued the following statement at the conclusion of
the visit Monday:

"Data for the first three quarters of 2008 show that the economy
continued to perform well through end-September.

"But the world economy is slowing and this will have two effects
on Bulgaria: lower foreign demand and a drop in capital inflows,
which have been an important source of growth so far.  Indeed,
there are preliminary signs of an economic deceleration in
Bulgaria in the fourth quarter, and the IMF mission's outlook for
2009 if for GDP growth to slow further to about 2 percent. With
slower growth the current account deficit is projected to decline
from 24 to 15 percent of GDP in 2009.  Inflation is expected to
fall to 4 1/2 percent at end-2009, helped by a sharp drop in
global commodity prices.

"Fortunately, Bulgaria starts from a strong position to deal with
the challenges ahead.  The public finances are in good shape, with
one of the highest fiscal surpluses in Europe.  In addition, the
balance sheets of the central bank and the government are strong,
with large foreign reserves and substantial buffers accumulated in
the fiscal reserve account.

"In a difficult external environment, it will be essential that
public policy is focused on maintaining public trust, and continue
the strong policies of recent years.  Fiscal surpluses remain an
important support for the currency board, and also essential to
preserve balances in the fiscal reserve account — a necessary
shield if problems were to emerge.

"It will also be important that wages that have been growing
rapidly slow, as a continuation of recent trends could affect
competitiveness."


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E S T O N I A
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* ESTONIA: May Breach Maastrich Fiscal Threshold, IMF Says
----------------------------------------------------------
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission visited Tallinn
during December 9-15, 2008 for discussions on Estonia's current
economic situation, as part of the IMF's annual consultation.

The mission issued the following statement at the conclusion of
the visit Monday:

"The global financial crisis is exacerbating Estonia's slowdown,
which began in early 2007.  With worldwide confidence low, and
global demand likely to remain weak, we do not expect the economy
to recover until 2010.

"To cope with the current global and domestic stresses, Estonia
can look to strengths in its policy and structural frameworks.
First among these is the fixed exchange rate, underpinned by the
robust currency board arrangement.  This should anchor price
expectations, leading to a sharp decline in inflation.  Second,
the banking sector is well capitalized and almost entirely owned
by Nordic groups that benefit from supportive stabilization
programs in their home countries.  Finally, labor and product
markets are flexible, which should help smooth the transition to
recovery.

"The major policy challenge is the budget.  The 2009 budget
incorporates a welcome adjustment that required difficult
decisions.  However, given the deteriorating global outlook, our
assessment is that the deficit will likely exceed 3 percent of GDP
in 2009 and beyond.  This does not present a near-term financing
risk given the prudent accumulation of fiscal reserves via
surpluses in recent years.  But the current fiscal posture is not
sustainable going forward.  Moreover, it risks breaching the
Maastricht fiscal threshold just when inflation is receding. This
could delay euro entry, which the authorities rightly consider to
be their highest priority.  What is needed now is early action to
achieve fiscal consolidation.

"This visit completes the mission's 2008 Article IV discussions
with Estonia."


===========
F R A N C E
===========


IT HARDWARE: S&P Withdraws 'B-' Long-Term Corporate Credit Rating
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that it had withdrawn its
'B-' long-term corporate credit rating on France-based IT hardware
and services provider Bull (Groupe) at the company's request.
Bull has no rated debt.


MHS ELECTRONICS: Placed Under Receivership by Nantes Court
----------------------------------------------------------
Anne-Francoise Pele at EE Times Europe reports that the Commercial
Court of Nantes decided on Dec. 10, 2008, to place MHS Electronics
under receivership with a six-month observation period.

The report notes that during this period a recovery plan for the
company will be defined with the help of a court-appointed
official receiver.

According to the report, the uncertainty of the worldwide market,
the lack of visibility for 2009 and a tight cash flow prompted the
company to file for insolvency proceedings.

The court opened insolvency proceedings against the company on
Dec. 5, 2008, the report recounts.

The company, the report relates, implemented cost-cutting measures
in July after a 20% decline in activity.

Evertiq reveals the cost-restructuring plan included the
suspension or termination of research programs, the establishment
of an efficiency program, as well as synergies with other
companies.

MHS Electronics, a subsidiary of the French MHS Industries holding
company, is a silicon foundry provider of specialized analog and
mixed-signal technologies.  The company has 370 employees, of
which 250 are employed at the facility in Nantes.


=============
G E R M A N Y
=============


ANODIX GMBH: Claims Registration Period Ends January 12
-------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Anodix GmbH have until Jan. 12, 2009, to register
their claims with court-appointed insolvency manager.

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the meeting at 9:00 a.m. on Feb. 18, 2009, at which time the
insolvency manager will present his first report.

The meeting of creditors will be held at:

         The District Court of Bonn
         Hall S 2.18
         William-Strasse 23
         53111 Bonn
         Germany

Claims set out in the insolvency manager's report will be verified
by the court during this meeting.  Creditors may also constitute a
creditors' committee or opt to appoint a new insolvency manager.

The insolvency manager can be reached at:

         Thomas Steger
         Koelnstrasse 135
         53757 Sankt Augustin
         Germany

The District Court opened bankruptcy proceedings against the
company on Nov. 14, 2008.  Consequently, all pending proceedings
against the company have been automatically stayed.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         Anodix GmbH
         Attn: Wolfgang Strele, Manager
         Am Bungartsberg 25
         53797 Lohmar
         Germany


ANTIOCH CO: U.S. Trustee Forms Five-Member Creditors Committee
--------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Trustee for Region 9 appointed seven creditors
to serve on an Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors for KB
Toys Inc. and its debtor-affiliates.

The creditors committee members are:

  1) Lisa Marie Drew
     8849 Ridgewood
     St. Joseph, MN 56374

  2) Heide Leigh Everett
     8553 Orange Road
     St. Joseph, MN 56374

  3) 2377 Commerce Boulevard, LLC
     Attn: Gary Gottschlich
     Gottschlich & Portune, LLP
     201 E. Sixth St.
     Dayton, OH 45402

  4) Kay Richter
     26352 Huckleberry Court
     Cold Spring MN 56320

  5) Walthall A&B, LP
     Attn: Jenny J. Hyun, Esq.
     c/o Weingarten Realty
     2600 Citadel Plaza Dr., Suite 300
     Houston, TX 77008

Official creditors' committees have the right to employ legal and
accounting professionals and financial advisors, at the Debtor's
expense.  They may investigate the Debtor's business and financial
affairs.  Importantly, official committees serve as fiduciaries to
the general population of creditors they represent.  Those
committees will also attempt to negotiate the terms of a
consensual Chapter 11 plan -- almost always subject to the terms
of strict confidentiality agreements with the Debtors and other
core parties-in-interest.  If negotiations break down, the
Committee may ask the Bankruptcy Court to replace management with
an independent trustee.  If the Committee concludes reorganization
of the Debtor is impossible, the Committee will urge the
Bankruptcy Court to convert the Chapter 11 cases to a liquidation
proceeding.

                          About Antioch

The Antioch Co. -- http://www.antiochcompany.com/-- which owns
St. Cloud-based Creative Memories.  The company was founded in
1926.  It consists of operating and business units located in
Ohio, Minnesota, Nevada, and Virginia.  The direct-selling
division encompasses the U.S. and Puerto Rico, Canada, Australia,
New Zealand, Germany, Japan and the United Kingdom, with expansion
planned in other European countries.  The Antioch employs more
than 1,090 people and manufactures, packages and markets more than
3,000 products to tens of thousands of independent sales
Consultants and retail dealers.  As reported in the Troubled
Company Reporter on Nov. 17, 2008, The Antioch Co. reached an
agreement with its lenders to restructure its debt.  To facilitate
this agreement, Antioch and six of its subsidiaries filed
voluntary petitions for Chapter 11 protection with the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Ohio.  In their
summary of schedules, the Debtors listed US$66,388,321 in total
assets and US$141,142,236 in total liabilities.


CONNECTASELL GMBH: Claims Registration Period Ends January 9
------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Connectasell GmbH have until Jan. 9, 2009, to
register their claims with court-appointed insolvency manager.

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the meeting at 9:00 a.m. on Feb. 10, 2009, at which time the
insolvency manager will present his first report.

The meeting of creditors will be held at:

         The District Court of Wuppertal
         Meeting Room A234
         Second Floor
         Isle 2
         42103 Wuppertal
         Germany


Claims set out in the insolvency manager's report will be verified
by the court during this meeting.  Creditors may also constitute a
creditors' committee or opt to appoint a new insolvency manager.

The insolvency manager can be reached at:

         Rainer Froelich
         Vohwinkeler Str. 58
         42329 Wuppertal
         Germany
         Tel: 0202/7470430
         Fax: 0202/7470431
         Web site: www.kuebler-gbr.de

The District Court opened bankruptcy proceedings against the
company on Dec. 8, 2009.  Consequently, all pending proceedings
against the company have been automatically stayed.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         Connectasell GmbH
         Obenitterstrasse 21
         42719 Solingen
         Germany

         Attn: Marco Ksobiak, Manager
         Karl-Geusen-Str. 217
         40625 Duesseldorf
         Germany


GROB AEROSPACE: Gets Attention of Two Potential Buyers
------------------------------------------------------
Grob Aerospace GmbH has attracted the interest of two potential
buyers, Thomas Stocker at AINonline reports citing the company's
insolvency administrator Dr. Michael Jaffe.

According to the report, the interested parties include Germany's
H3 Aerospace and China's Guizhou Aviation Industry Corporation.

The bidders, the report relates, are interested primarily in
Grob's trainers.

Both companies are offering around US$4.5 million for the trainer
business, and GAIC might offer an additional US$3.5 million for
the SPn after further investigation, the report states.

However, the report notes both offers are still tentative.
The winning bidder will be selected before year-end by a
creditors' committee for further negotiations.

The insolvency administrator meanwhile said negotiations are
continuing with other interested parties, although he indicated
the outlook for a seamless continuation of the SPn program is
bleak, the report relates.

As reported in the TCR-Europe, Grob was declared insolvent on
October 31, 2008.

Grob had to file for preliminary insolvency on August 18, 2008, as
a result of the delays in the spn program which in consequence led
to an increased cash requirement in order to complete the project.
The company's former loan provider elected to discontinue their
support.

Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, Grob Aerospace --
http://www.grob-aerospace.net/-- is one of the world's largest
and most experienced composite aircraft manufacturers since
1971.  Grob's research, development, manufacturing and assembly
facilities are located in Tussenhausen-Mattsies, Germany, where
it maintains its own purpose built airfield.  Its central base
in the United States is located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire
with several regional sales offices throughout the USA.


HEIDELBERGCEMENT AG: Lenders Approve Loan Waiver Request
--------------------------------------------------------
Lenders to HeidelbergCement AG have approved a waiver request on
loans backing the acquisition of UK-based Hanson in mid-2007,
Alasdair Reilly at Reuters reports citing a bank source close to
the deal.

The report relates that the source said HeidelbergCement secured
more than 90% lender consent for the loan waiver request.

The request, which will adjust the debt-to-EBITDA ratio covenant
on the deal to 4.25 times from 4 times over a test period, would
recognize the effects of currency changes on the company's dollar-
denominated debt, the report states.

The one-time waiver covers the covenant test period beginning on
Dec. 31, the report notes.  The company, the report adds, will
provide more information to lenders in March 2009.

According to Dow Jones Newswires, a total of EUR16.2 billion of
loans was originally put in place in July 2007 to back the
company's acquisition of Hanson for GBP7.7 billion.

Citing Moody's Investors' Service, Dow Jones Newswires relates
HeidelbergCement, which has EUR8 billion maturing in the next 20
months, required consent from two-thirds of a lending syndicate
made up of 47 banks.

                     About HeidelbergCement

Based in Heidelberg, Germany, HeidelbergCement AG --
http://www.heidelbergcement.com/-- is a global producer of
cement, concrete and building materials.  The company's core
activities include the production and distribution of cement and
aggregates, the two raw materials for concrete.  It is also
engaged in in the provision of such products as ready-mixed
concrete, as well as concrete products and elements.  In 2007, the
company took over Hanson Group.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Dec. 9, 2008, Fitch Ratings
downgraded Germany-based HeidelbergCement AG's Long-term Issuer
Default and senior unsecured ratings to 'BB-' (BB minus) from
'BB+' and placed the ratings on Rating Watch Negative. The Short-
term IDR has been affirmed at 'B'.  Fitch simultaneously
downgraded HC's subsidiary Hanson plc's senior unsecured rating to
'BB-' (BB minus) from 'BB+' and placed the rating on RWN.

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Dec. 5, 2008, Moody's Investors
Service downgraded HeidelbergCement's corporate family and debt
issuance ratings to Ba3 from Ba1.  The outlook on the ratings is
negative.

On Nov. 25, 2008, the TCR-Europe reported that Standard & Poor's
Ratings Services said that it lowered its long-term corporate
credit rating on Germany-based cement producer HeidelbergCement AG
to 'BB-' from 'BB+'.  At the same time, S&P affirmed the 'B'
short-term rating.

S&P also lowered the issue ratings to 'B+' from 'BB+' on senior
unsecured bonds issued by HC, and subsidiaries HeidelbergCement
Finance B.V., Hanson Ltd., and Hanson Australia Funding Ltd.  S&P
has assigned a recovery rating of '5' to these bonds, indicating
S&P's expectation for modest (10%-30%) recovery in the event of a
payment default.

All the ratings remain on CreditWatch with negative implications,
where they had been initially placed on Oct. 24, 2008.


HSW FORSTBETRIEBE: Claims Registration Period Ends January 12
-------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of HSW Forstbetriebe GmbH have until Jan. 12, 2009, to
register their claims with court-appointed insolvency manager.

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the meeting at 9:50 a.m. on Feb. 10, 2009, at which time the
insolvency manager will present his first report.

The meeting of creditors will be held at:

         The District Court of Wuppertal
         Meeting Room A234
         Second Floor
         Isle 2
         42103 Wuppertal
         Germany

Claims set out in the insolvency manager's report will be verified
by the court during this meeting.  Creditors may also constitute a
creditors' committee or opt to appoint a new insolvency manager.

The insolvency manager can be reached at:

         Dr. Marc d`Avoine
         Doeppersberg 19
         42103 Wuppertal
         Germany
         Tel: 0202-245070
         Fax: 0202-2450777

The District Court opened bankruptcy proceedings against the
company on Dec. 10, 2008.  Consequently, all pending proceedings
against the company have been automatically stayed.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         HSW Forstbetriebe GmbH
         Attn: Bernd Capellen, Manager
         Schallbruch 33
         42781 Haan
         Germany


INTERNATIONAL FACILITY: Claims Registration Period Ends Jan. 15
---------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of International Facility Agency GmbH have until Jan.
15, 2009, to register their claims with court-appointed insolvency
manager.

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 26, 2009, at which time the
insolvency manager will present his first report.

The meeting of creditors will be held at:

         The District Court of Dresden
         Hall D131
         Olbrichtplatz 1
         01099 Dresden
         Germany

Claims set out in the insolvency manager's report will be verified
by the court during this meeting.  Creditors may also constitute a
creditors' committee or opt to appoint a new insolvency manager.

The insolvency manager can be reached at:

         Hagen Hirth
         Glacisstrasse 9a
         01099 Dresden
         Germany

The District Court opened bankruptcy proceedings against the
company on Dec. 10, 2008.  Consequently, all pending proceedings
against the company have been automatically stayed.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         International Facility Agency GmbH
         Bauernweg 36
         01109 Dresden
         Germany

         Attn: Jens Richter, Manager
         C/o Firma Autogas GmbH
         Charlotte-Buehler-Str. 13
         01099 Dresden
         Germany


MICROEMISSIVE DISPLAYS: Files for Insolvency
--------------------------------------------
Christoph Hammerschmidt at EE Times Europe reports that
MicroEmissive Displays Germany GmbH has filed for insolvency.

Citing media releases, the report discloses the German unit has
halted production.

According to the report, insolvency administrator Ruediger
Wienberg said he aims at financial restructuring.

Mr. Wienberg pointed out that due to the financial crisis, it has
proved to be impossible to generate sufficient fundings for the
company, the report relates.  He added the company had suffered
sales problems.

In November, the company's Edinburgh-based parent MicroEmissive
Displays Group plc went into administration after having used up
more than 50 percent of its cash, the report recounts.

Launched in 2006, MicroEmissive Displays Germany GmbH produced
energy-efficient small polymer displays for camera finders and
other multimedia applications.  The company employs about 25
workers in Dresden.


ST. GABRIEL GEMEINNUETZIGE: Claims Registration Ends Jan. 12
------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of St. Gabriel Gemeinnuetzige GmbH have until
Jan. 12, 2009, to register their claims with court-appointed
insolvency manager.

Creditors and other interested parties are encouraged to attend
the meeting at a.m. on MD, at which time the insolvency manager
will present his first report.

The meeting of creditors will be held at:

         The District Court of Schweinfurt
         Meeting Hall 22
         Eingang Friedenstr. 2
         Schweinfurt
         Germany

Claims set out in the insolvency manager's report will be verified
by the court during this meeting.  Creditors may also constitute a
creditors' committee or opt to appoint a new insolvency manager.

The insolvency manager can be reached at:

         Stefan Herrmann
         Heinestr. 7b
         97070 Wuerzburg
         Germany
         Tel: 0931/359800
         Fax: 0931/359 8050

The District Court opened bankruptcy proceedings against the
company on Dec. 11, 2009.  Consequently, all pending proceedings
against the company have been automatically stayed.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         St. Gabriel gemeinnuetzige GmbH
         Nachtigallenweg 2
         97708 Bad Bocklet
         Germany

         Attn: Sonja Wild, Manager
         Blutenburgstr. 87
         80634 Muenchen
         Germany


TSAR 04: Fitch Downgrades Rating on US$30 Mil. Notes to 'CCC'
-------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has downgraded both classes of Tsar 04 Credit
Default Swap and removed Class A from Rating Watch Negative as:

  -- US$30 million Class A CDS downgraded to 'CCC' from 'BB';
     removed from RWN

  -- US$13,750,581 Class E CDS downgraded to 'C' from 'CC'

The downgrades reflect continued collateral deterioration in Tsar
04's reference portfolio since Fitch's rating action in May 2008.
Sub-investment grade assets, using Fitch derived ratings, stand at
6.8% of the portfolio as of September 2008.  Of these, assets
rated at 'CC' or below stand at 5.8% of the portfolio.  In
comparison, in May 2008, sub-investment grade assets stood at 5.1%
of the portfolio and 'CCC+' or below assets made up 1.1% of the
portfolio.  Further, this compares to low credit enhancement
levels of 6.09% and 1.35% for classes A and E respectively.

In addition, 8 assets are currently on RWN, representing 6% of the
portfolio, making further negative rating migration likely.  All
RWN names have been notched down three notches for the purpose of
this analysis.  No credit event notice has been served to date.
The portfolio comprises US subprime RMBS (8.2%), US Alt-A mortgage
loans (4.4%), and US structured finance CDOs (19.4%).

Fitch Ratings published its updated approach for rating
collateralized debt obligations backed by structured finance
assets on December 16, 2008.  The updated criteria follow an
eight-week consultation period. Fitch initially announced the new
proposals on October 14, 2008, and further clarified its treatment
of commercial real estate assets on November 14, 2008.  In this
case, Fitch's rating action was prompted by deteriorating
portfolio performance and is consistent with the updated criteria.

Tsar 04 is a synthetic collateralized debt obligation referencing
a US$3.64 billion portfolio of mainly US structured finance
assets.  At close, Deutsche Bank AG (Deutsche, rated 'AA-' (AA
minus)/'F1+'/Outlook Stable) bought protection under five credit
defaults swaps and collateralized three of the swaps from the
issuance of US$162 million Eirles Four Series 6-8 notes.  These
notes have now paid in full and the corresponding swaps (Class B,
C, and D) have been unwound.  The reference portfolio is selected
by Deutsche Bank AG.


* GERMANY: EC Approves Modifications to Financial Rescue Scheme
---------------------------------------------------------------
The European Commission has approved, under EC Treaty state aid
rules, modifications to the German rescue package for financial
institutions, initially approved by the Commission on
October 27, 2008.  The amendments concern mainly the remuneration
of recapitalization measures, in line with the Commission's
Communication on recapitalization.  Although basic remuneration
rates may, in certain cases, be below the rates foreseen in the
initial package, the price for the state participation increases
in proportion to its duration, so as to incite beneficiaries to
pay back the state support as soon as market conditions permit it.
This will ensure the proportionality of the amended measures and
contribute to the adequacy of the whole scheme to remedy a serious
disturbance in the German economy.  The Commission therefore
concluded that the German rescue package, as amended, was
compatible with Article 87.3.b of the EC Treaty.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "The present decision
demonstrates again, how quickly and effectively the Commission can
adapt to changing conditions in the financial markets with good
cooperation from Member States.  On this basis we have now finally
found an acceptable solution in order to allow confidence building
and credit stimulating measures in Germany including the
recapitalization of Commerzbank".

On December 11, 2008, Germany informed the Commission about a set
of modifications, it intended to make to the German support
package for financial institutions.  These amendments are aimed at
adapting the package to the Commission's Communication on
recapitalization and to changes in the fast evolving financial
markets.

The main amendments concern the following basic features of the
recapitalization measures:

    * Entry level - remuneration for fundamentally sound banks -
in line with the Communication on recapitalization, the
remuneration for such measures would depend on the risk profile of
the beneficiary and on the capital instrument.  For fundamentally
sound financial institutions the basic remuneration would vary
according to the risk profile and instrument chosen from 7% (for
subordinated debt) to 9.3% (for instruments with features like
ordinary shares), whereas institutions in distress would have to
pay a minimum of 10%.  These minima would not apply if private
investors participate under the same conditions and to a
significant extent in the capital injection.  In particular, for
hybrid capital which is considered as core tier 1 capital, there
will be an entry remuneration of 9 % for fundamentally sound
banks.

    * Step up - in order to ensure that strong incentives exist to
encourage beneficiaries to pay back the state support as soon as
market conditions permit Germany proposed a combination of two
measures: either the banks accept a dividend ban or they increase
the remuneration by 0.5 % per annum over the next 5 years.  The
increase can be smaller if a dividend ban is maintained at least
for some years or a dividend restriction is accepted.

    * Restructuring plan - The Commission accepted in principle
that fundamentally sound banks do not need to provide a
restructuring plan.  They have however to provide a report that
illustrates that they remain fundamentally sound and how they plan
to repay the state capital.

    * Other banks still need to pay a remuneration of in principle
10 % and need to provide a restructuring plan after six months in
order to enable the Commission to assess the need for structural
interventions.

Further amendments concern the possibility of extending the
duration of debt guarantees of up to five years under certain
circumstances and for limited amounts.  Moreover, in case a
guarantee is given for collateralized claims the remuneration can
be reduced.

The Commission is satisfied that as a result of its dialogue with
the German authorities, the banking rescue package has been
adjusted to changing market conditions, including a reduction of
interest rates by the European Central Bank.  The adjusted package
takes into account the latest guidance of the Commission and may
as a result also attract fundamentally sound banks.  The
Commission understands that the recapitalization conditions for
Commerzbank are being amended so as to comply with the new scheme.


=============
H U N G A R Y
=============


* HUNGARY: IMF Says Financial Market Conditions Still Under Stress
------------------------------------------------------------------
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff team on Monday,
December 15, 2008, concluded a visit to Hungary to review recent
financial, economic, and policy developments.  The review was part
of the IMF's Emergency Financing Mechanism procedures, which were
used to expedite the approval of the Stand-By Arrangement with
Hungary on November 6, 2008.

Recent financial and economic developments have been broadly as
envisaged under the IMF-supported economic program. Specifically:

    * Financial market conditions have generally improved since
      October, but remain under stress.  The exchange rate has
      been broadly stable, government bond yields have declined,
      and parent banks have continued to support their
      subsidiaries in Hungary.  However, external financing
      conditions remain difficult and, with global deleveraging
      expected to continue in 2009, could deteriorate further.

    * Economic indicators confirm that a downturn is underway.
      GDP data indicate a small decline in the third quarter of
      2008 relative to the second quarter, and monthly data on
      industrial production and exports point to a larger
      decline in the fourth quarter.  Looking forward, the
      economic downturn in the euro area and other trading
      partners, and the tightening of lending conditions are
      expected to lead to a fall in GDP in 2009.

Recent policy developments have also been broadly in line with the
program.  Specifically:

    * Fiscal policy developments appear to be on track.  The
      general government fiscal deficit in 2008 is projected to
      meet the target of 3.4 percent of GDP.  The budget for
      2009 is expected to deliver the size of fiscal adjustment
      envisaged under the program.  The new Fiscal
      Responsibility Law is welcome as it introduces policy
      rules and independent scrutiny of budget proposals.

    * The bank support law is being considered by parliament
      today.  While the banks are currently in strong positions,
      the ongoing global deleveraging and the economic downturn
      make it important that Hungarian banks have access to
      capital enhancement and borrowing guarantee facilities
      that are similar to those available to banks in other EU
      countries.

    * The policy interest rate has been reduced, reflecting the
      fall in projected inflation and the stability of the
      exchange rate.  Inflation has fallen a little more quickly
      than expected, mostly due to declines in food and energy
      prices.  Looking forward, the outlook for inflation is an
      important consideration, but unsettled financial market
      conditions point to the need to exercise caution in
      cutting the policy rate further.

Continued implementation of economic policies consistent with the
program is essential to maintain investor confidence and minimize
the depth of the economic downturn.


=============
I R E L A N D
=============


ELAN CORP: To Close Offices in New York and Tokyo
-------------------------------------------------
Elan Corporation plc in a press statement on Friday,
December 12, 2008, said that it is realigning some of its
functions to direct additional investment towards its innovative
pipeline.  The realignment will result in the elimination of a
number of positions and additional refinement to Elan's commercial
activities in Tysabri for Crohn's disease.  Elan has also decided
to close its offices in New York and Tokyo during the first
quarter of 2009.

Elan CEO Kelly Martin said that for the past several months the
company has been assessing several options to ensure sufficient
resources are directed toward its most promising research and
development opportunities.

"We continually evaluate our pipeline, product portfolio, and
company structure with a goal of maintaining our flexibility and
ability to invest in the most valuable product opportunities for
patients while driving value for our shareholders," Mr. Martin
said.

Elan President Carlos V. Paya, MD, PhD, said that Elan will shift
its effort from what is a traditional sales commercial model to a
model based on clinical support and education.

"Going forward," Dr. Paya said, "we will continue providing the
appropriate clinical information and scientific data to support
the key gastroenterologist relationships we have established in
the United States.  Elan continues to believe Tysabri is an
important therapeutic option for patients with moderately to
severely active Crohn's disease for whom conventional CD therapies
and anti-TNFs are not viable."

                   About Elan Corp.

Headquartered in Ireland, Elan Corporation plc (NYSE: ELN) --
http://www.elan.com/-- is a neuroscience-based biotechnology
company.  Elan shares trade on the New York, London and Dublin
Stock Exchanges.

                          *    *    *

Elan Corp. plc carries Moody's long-term corporate family rating
of B3, probability of default rating of B2 with positive
outlook.  The company meanwhile carries Standard & Poor's B
rating on long-term foreign issuer credit and B rating on long-
term local issuer credit with positive outlook.  Both ratings
hold to date.


SWISSCO LTD: Workers Reach Agreement with Liquidator Over Wages
---------------------------------------------------------------
Eoin Burke-Kennedy at the Irish Times reports that workers at
Swissco Ltd in Co Cork ended a 12-hour protest on Tuesday after
receiving assurances that they will be paid any outstanding wages
in the wake of the company's closure.

Siptu sectoral organizer Alan O'Leary secured commitments on wages
and other entitlements from the High Court-appointed liquidator,
the Irish Times relates.

The Irish Times recounts the 154 staff at Swissco were told on
Monday that they were to be made redundant after a liquidator was
appointed to the company following a period of examinership.

According to RTE Business, the company was put into liquidation
after attempts to find new investment failed.

A Swissco spokesman, as cited by the Irish Times, said Tuesday the
company had been unprofitable for some time.

Citing Mr. O' Leary, the Irish Times discloses the union was
planning to meet with government officials over the coming days to
discuss re-employment options for the staff.

"We are concerned about the lack of consultation and information
provided by management during the past few weeks and we plan to
raise this and the provision of a proper redundancy package with
the Minister for Labour Mr Billy Kelleher," Mr. O'Leary was quoted
by the report as saying.


===================
K A Z A K H S T A N
===================


ABSOLUTE TRUST: Proof of Claim Deadline Slated for February 3
-------------------------------------------------------------
LLP Absolute Trust Company has declared insolvency.  Creditors
have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         LLP Absolute Trust Company
         Office 108
         Panfilov Str. 106
         480091 Almaty
         Kazakhstan


AVANGARD KAZ: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3
------------------------------------------------------
LLP Construction Company Avangard Kaz Stroy has declared
insolvency.

Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         LLP Construction Company
         Avangard Kaz Stroy
         Aimauytov Str. 11
         Enbekshikazakhsky
         Shymkent
         160050 South Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan


IRTYSH EXPRESS: Claims Filing Period Ends February 3
----------------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of East Kazakhstan
has declared LLP Upper Irtysh Express Courier Service Virtex
insolvent.

Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of East Kazakhstan
         Office 105
         Myzy Str. 2/1
         Ust-Kamenogorsk
         East Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan
         Tel: 8 (7232) 57-83-69


KK-ULAS LLP: Creditors' Claims Due on February 3
------------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of North Kazakhstan
has declared LLP KK-Ulas insolvent on Nov. 11, 2008.

Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009 to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of North Kazakhstan
         Internatsionalnaya Str. 11-22
         Petropavlovsk
         North Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan


KUANYSH LLP: Claims Registration Ends February 4
------------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of South Kazakhstan
has declared LLP Kuanysh insolvent.

Creditors have until Feb. 4, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of South Kazakhstan
         Ilyaev Str. 24
         Shymkent
         South Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan


LAND OIL: Proof of Claim Deadline Slated for February 4
-------------------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of South Kazakhstan
has declared LLP Land Oil insolvent.

Creditors have until Feb. 4, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of South Kazakhstan
         Ilyaev Str. 24
         Shymkent
         South Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan


REGIONALNY AVTOBUSNY: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of West Kazakhstan
has declared LLP Regional Auto Bus Park Regionalny AvtobusnY Park
insolvent.

Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of West Kazakhstan
         Krylataya Str. 25
         Uralsk
         West Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan
         Tel: 8 (7112) 23-91-39
              8 777 797 06-51
              8 701 530 96-50


SEMEY JOL: Claims Filing Period Ends February 3
-----------------------------------------------
The Specialized Inter-Regional Economic Court of East Kazakhstan
has declared LLP Semey Jol Service insolvent.

Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009 to submit proofs of claims to:

         The Specialized Inter-Regional
         Economic Court of East Kazakhstan
         Kojeduba Str. 46
         Ust-Kamenogorsk
         East Kazakhstan
         Kazakhstan
         Tel: 8 (7232) 52-72-51


STROY COMPLECT-KREPEJ: Creditors' Claims Due on February 3
----------------------------------------------------------
LLP Construction Company Stroy Complect-Krepej has declared
insolvency.  Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs
of claims to:

         LLP Construction Company
         Stroy Complect-Krepej
         Eset-Batyr Str. 94-5
         Aktobe
         Aktube
         Kazakhstan


UNI TECH: Claims Registration Ends February 3
---------------------------------------------
LLP Uni Tech Snub Service has declared insolvency.  Creditors have
until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         LLP Uni Tech Snub Service
         Valihanov Str. 41-39
         Astana
         Kazakhstan


===================
K Y R G Y Z S T A N
===================


KYRGYZ-GERMAN ENTERPRISE: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 3
---------------------------------------------------------------
Joint Kyrgyz-German Enterprise Status has declared insolvency.
Creditors have until Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims.

The company can be reached at: (+996 312) 54-26-66


OSAKA MOTORS: Creditors Must File Claims by February 3
------------------------------------------------------
LLC Osaka Motors has declared insolvency.  Creditors have until
Feb. 3, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         LLC Osaka Motors
         Unusaliev Str. 88
         Bishkek
         Kyrgyzstan


=====================
N E T H E R L A N D S
=====================


LYCOS EUROPE: Sells United Domains to United Internet
-----------------------------------------------------
Robert Andrews at PaidContent.org reports that LYCOS Europe N.V.
has sold United Domains AG to United Internet AG.

In a press statement on Friday, December 12, United Internet said
that in the run-up to the transaction, the value of United Domains
was set at around EUR34 million.  The final purchase price will be
determined after United Domains has posted its annual financial
statements for fiscal year 2008 and an accrual account based on
the date of completion.  The purchase price will be settled fully
in cash whereby EUR7 million will be held in escrow as a security
guarantee for United Internet.

United Internet however noted that the share acquisition is still
subject to the usual anti-trust approval procedures.  The
transaction is expected to be completed in the first quarter
quarter of 2009.

United Domains is a specialist for the fast and simple
registration of domain names with over 100 international domain
endings.  The profitable company was founded in August 2000 and
has since become one of Europe's leading domain registrars. United
Domains currently administers over 1.1 million domains of around
180,000 customers.  The company is still run by the founders
Florian Huber (CEO), Alexander Helm and Markus Eggensperger, who
will own a shareholding of around 15% of the company in the
future.

PaidContent.org meanwhile discloses the remaining assets on sale
include Lycos' shopping portal and Danish Web site.

As reported in the TCR-Europe, PaidContent.org said the
shareholders of LYCOS Europe, at an extraordinary general meeting
in Amsterdam on Friday, December 12, voted to liquidate the
business, resulting to the loss of 500 jobs.

The shareholders also approved the sale the company's domain
registration business, shopping portal and Danish Web site as
going concerns, the report stated.

                         Capital Repayment

In addition to the new strategy for the business units the general
meeting approved a capital repayment of EUR50,000,000
(or EUR 0.1605 per share) to be charged to the premium reserve as
well as the proposed amendment of the articles of association.
The capital repayment is expected to be made payable on December
19, 2008.

                    Strategic Review Process

As reported by the TCR-Europe, LYCOS in a December 2 press
statement announced the results of its strategic review process.

LYCOS and its advisors have evaluated the different available
options including the sale of the company as a whole, a sale of
all or parts of the assets of LYCOS, and restructuring and partial
liquidation of the business.

As a result of this strategic review process the Management Board
and the Supervisory Board of LYCOS came to the conclusion that the
best available option of the company is to:

    (i) strive for a sale of its domains, Danish portal and
  shopping activities and

   (ii) to discontinue the portal and Web hosting activities

On December 5, 2008, the TCR-Europe reported that according to
vnunet.com, the company decided to put its European portal and web
hosting business into liquidation as its restructuring evaluation
concluded it will be very difficult for the business to become
profitable.

LYCOS, vnunet.com noted, expects its consolidated losses to
decrease substantially following the liquidation.

LYCOS, ITProPortal.com recalled, failed to find an investor in the
current frosty economic environment.  It also faced some fierce
competition in Internet search domain from the likes of Google and
Yahoo, ITProPortal.com added.

In the first three quarters, the company, ITProPortal.com
disclosed, incurred a massive net loss of EUR17.1 million on total
sales of EUR46.9 million.

                    About LYCOS Europe N.V.

Headquartered in Haarlem, the Netherlands -- LYCOS Europe N.V. --
http://www.lycos-europe.com-- is a portal provider and online
advertiser.  The company has four business units: Communication
and Communities, Portal and Search, Webhosting and Domain Names,
and Shopping.  It operates through its wholly owned subsidiaries
in the United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, the United
States, Armenia, Spain, the Netherlands, France, and Italy.


NORTH SEA: Fitch Junks Ratings on US$90 Million Notes
-----------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has downgraded all classes of North Sea Island CDO I
Limited, removed classes A and B from Rating Watch Negative, and
assigned a Negative rating Outlook to class A, as listed below:

  -- US$30 million Class A notes downgraded to 'B' from 'BB';
     removed from RWN; assigned Outlook Negative

  -- US$60 million Class B notes downgraded to 'CC' from 'B';
     removed from RWN

  -- US$30 million Class C notes downgraded to 'C' from 'CCC'

The downgrades reflect continued collateral deterioration in North
Sea Island's reference portfolio since Fitch's rating action in
May 2008.  Sub-investment grade assets, using Fitch derived
ratings, stand at 4% of the portfolio as of September 2008.  Of
these, assets rated at 'CC' or below stand at 2.2% of the
portfolio.  In comparison, in May 2008, sub-investment grade
assets stood at 4.1% of the portfolio and the lowest-rated asset
was rated 'B' which made up 1.4% of the portfolio.  Further, this
compares to low credit enhancement levels of 3.51%, 1.38% and
0.32% for classes A, B and C respectively.

In addition, 12 assets are currently on RWN, representing 9.7% of
the portfolio, making further negative rating migration likely.
All RWN names have been notched down three notches for the purpose
of this analysis.  No credit event notice has been served to date.
The portfolio comprises US Alt-A mortgage loans (5.2%), US
structured finance CDOs (6.8%) and other US structured finance
assets (39.9%).

Fitch Ratings published its updated approach for rating
collateralized debt obligations backed by structured finance
assets on December 16, 2008.  The updated criteria follow an
eight-week consultation period.  Fitch initially announced the new
proposals on October 14, 2008, and further clarified its treatment
of commercial real estate assets on November 14, 2008.  In this
case, Fitch's rating action was prompted by deteriorating
portfolio performance and is consistent with the updated criteria.

North Sea Island is a synthetic collateralized debt obligation
referencing a US$2.82bn portfolio of mainly US structured finance
assets.  At close, proceeds from the issuance of the US$129
million North Sea Island notes were used to collateralize a credit
default swap between the issuer and ABN AMRO Bank NV (ABN, rated
'AA-' (AA minus)/'F1+'/Outlook Stable), the CDS counterparty.  The
reference portfolio is managed by ABN.


SNS REAAL: EC Approves Dutch Authorities' Recapitalization
-----------------------------------------------------------
The European Commission on Thursday last week approved, under EC
Treaty state aid rules, an emergency recapitalization worth EUR750
million that the Dutch authorities intend to grant to SNS REAAL
N.V.  The Commission found the measure to be in line with its
Guidance Communications on state aid to overcome the current
financial crisis and on the recapitalization of financial
institutions in the current financial crisis.  The measure
constitutes an adequate means to remedy a serious disturbance in
the Dutch economy while avoiding undue distortions of competition
and is therefore compatible with Article 87.3.b. of the EC Treaty.
In particular, the measure is limited in time and scope, requires
an adequate remuneration and provides safeguards to minimize
distortions of competition.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "The capital injection
is necessary to restore the markets' confidence in SNS REAAL and
to ensure the bank's contribution in providing loans to the real
economy."

On December 3, 2008, the Dutch authorities notified their plans to
recapitalize SNS REAAL N.V. with EUR750 million via a special type
of securities.  Furthermore SNS will receive EUR500 million
through the issuance of core capital instruments to the private
independent foundation Stichting Beheer SNS REAAL.

Due to the current financial crisis, even fundamentally sound
institutions like SNS REAAL N.V. may experience distress and be
required to reassure financial markets of their financial
stability.  Against this background, it was considered necessary
to strengthen SNS REAAL N.V.'s capital base against possible
future losses.  Thus, the capital injection, alongside the capital
injection from Stichting Beheer SNS REAAL, will increase the tier
1 ratio of SNS Bank N.V. to 10% and the solvency ratio of SNS
Verzekeringen N.V. to 200%.

The securities to be issued would qualify as core tier 1 capital
and produce an annual coupon equal to the higher of:

    * EUR0.45 per security, non cumulative, payable annually
      in arrears

    * 110% of the dividend paid on the ordinary shares in 2009

    * 120% of the dividend paid on the ordinary shares in 2010

    * 125% of the dividend paid on the ordinary shares from 2011
      onwards

The coupon will only be paid if a dividend is paid on ordinary
shares or on B shares.  If SNS REAAL N.V. decides to buy the
securities back, it would have to pay the state 150% of the issue
price, unless the shares were repurchased in the first year after
the issuance.  In the latter case, the state would receive 100% of
the issue price plus accrued interests and a repurchase fee.

The Commission concluded that the measure complies with the
conditions laid down in its Guidance Communications.  In
particular, the measures meet these criteria:

    * necessity: SNS REAAL N.V. has an important role within the
      Dutch financial sector - a loss of confidence in this
      institution would have led to a further disturbance of the
      current financial situation and harmful spill-over effects
      to the economy as whole

    * limited temporal scope: the Dutch authorities have
      committed to submitting a plan after six months, showing
      how SNS REAAL will secure long term viability

    * appropriate own contribution: even with the uncertainty
      inherent in core tier 1 securities, SNS REAAL N.V. would
      pay, taking into account the annual coupon and the
      repurchase options, an adequate remuneration to the state,
      with an expected return in excess of 10%.  Adequate
      safeguards are in place so that the Commission is informed
      if there are any deviations and, if necessary, can impose
      additional behavioral constraints

    * avoidance of undue distortions of competition: the package
      foresees sufficient behavioral rules to prevent an abuse
      of the state support, e.g. the maintenance of a certain
      solvency ratio.

Headquartered in Utrecth, Netherlands, SNS REAAL N.V. --
http://www.snsreaal.nl/-- is a Dutch banking and insurance
service provider.


===========
R U S S I A
===========


BASISBANK JSC: Fitch Holds Currency Issuer Default Rating at 'CCC'
------------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has affirmed JSC Basisbank's ratings, including its
Long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating of 'CCC' with a
Stable Outlook.

The ratings reflect the small size and franchise of the bank, the
challenging operating environment, potentially vulnerable
liquidity resulting from short-term and concentrated funding,
recent rapid retail loan growth and weaker performance in 9M08.
The ratings also consider the bank's reasonable reported asset
quality to date, currently satisfactory liquidity and solid
capitalization.  The proportion of foreign currency lending is
moderate by Georgian market standards, but still significant and a
potential source of credit risk.

The performance of the bank in 9M08 was constrained by high cost
increases and a weaker net interest margin due to pressures on
both sides of the balance sheet.  Although the reported level of
loans overdue by more than 90 days was still a low 0.6% at end-
Q308, the recent rapid retail loan growth and increased proportion
of unsecured lending is likely to lead to increased credit costs
going forward as the loan portfolio seasons in a challenging
credit environment.

Although Basisbank's funding is primarily sourced from short-term
and concentrated customer accounts, the bank is trying to
diversify and lengthen its funding base, in particular by
attracting long-term funds from the European Bank for
Reconstruction and Development, which is now a shareholder of the
bank, and other financial institutions.  Although Basisbank
suffered a 10% outflow of customer deposits in August 2008
(broadly in line with other Georgian banks) during the Russia-
Georgia military conflict of the same month, its liquidity
position remained manageable and is currently satisfactory.  Aside
from potential funding benefits, the EBRD's involvement may also
help to strengthen the bank's management and corporate governance.

Basisbank is a small bank, with a market share in Georgia of about
1.3% of assets at end-Q308, which focuses on the SME and retail
segments.  The EBRD became a 15% shareholder of the bank in May
2008, and has an option to increase its share in the bank up to
25%. None of Basisbank's other 21 individual shareholders has a
blocking (25%) stake.

Rating actions:

  -- Long-term foreign currency IDR: affirmed at 'CCC'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Short-term foreign currency IDR: affirmed at 'C'

  -- Individual rating: affirmed at 'D/E'

  -- Support rating: affirmed at '5'

  -- Support rating floor: affirmed at 'No Floor'


ELGAUGOL OJSC: Yakutia Bankruptcy Hearing Set February 24
---------------------------------------------------------
The Arbitration Court of Yakutia will convene at 3:00 p.m. on
Feb. 24, 2009, to hear bankruptcy supervision procedure on OJSC
Elgaugol (TIN 1434027592) (Coal Mining).  The case is docketed
under Case No. A58–6008/08.

The Temporary Insolvency Manager is:

         N. Solovyev
         Post User Box 12
         109443 Moscow
         Russia

The Debtor can be reached at:

         OJSC Elgaugol
         Severaya Str. 5
         Neryungi
         678960 Yakutia
         Russia


FINDSERVICEBANK: Moody's Lowers Currency Deposit Ratings to 'B3'
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the long-term local and
foreign currency deposit ratings of Fundservicebank to B3 from B2.
FSB's E+ bank financial strength rating and its Not Prime short-
term local and foreign currency deposit ratings were affirmed.
Concurrently, Moody's Interfax Rating Agency downgraded FSB's
long-term national scale rating to Baa2.ru from Baa1.ru.  The
outlook on all of the bank's global scale ratings is stable, while
the NSR carries no specific outlook.  Moscow-based Moody's
Interfax is majority-owned by Moody's, a leading global rating
agency.

Moody's notes that these rating actions reflect the high and
further growing levels of concentration on asset and liability
sides of FSB's balance sheet, while the bank's regulatory and
economic capitalization remains low, with its Tier 1 ratio only
just reaching 8% -- the minimum level prescribed by Basel II and
the international best practices -- throughout 2007 and 2008.  The
rating agency explains that, in the current hostile economic
environment in Russia, the bank's capitalization levels may prove
to be insufficient to absorb the potential losses stemming from
the very high level of single-name and industry concentration in
the bank's corporate loan book, as well as the substantial volume
of related-party business.

Furthermore, on the liability side the bank heavily relies on just
a few large corporate depositors (with 20 the largest deposits
together exceeding 60% of the bank's total customer funding)
which, although bears no immediate liquidity risks for the bank,
still renders FSB vulnerable to sudden chunky withdrawals by large
customers.  Moody's notes that the bank's depositors have
demonstrated an outstanding degree of commitment to the bank
during H2 2008 market stresses, nevertheless, the rating agency
can not underestimate the potential impact of political aspects
and/or tighter liquidity positions of depositors on deposit
outflow and/or the final selection by the clients (of which
majority are state-controlled companies) of a serving bank.

At the same time, Moody's acknowledges FSB's entrenched market
positions and proven expertise in servicing the Russian aerospace
industry, including longstanding business relationships with a
number of recognized leading entities in this industry.  Other
positive drivers for FSB's ratings include its low market risk
appetite and virtually no dependence on market funding.

The previous rating action on Fundservicebank was taken on 9
February 2007, when Moody's assigned its first-time ratings of
B2/NP/E+/Baa1.ru.

Domiciled in Moscow, Russia, Fundservicebank reported -- as at 31
December 2007 -- total IFRS assets of US$742 million (2006:
US$522 million), total shareholders' equity of US$58.3 million
(2006: US$34.8 million) and net income of US$15.1 million (2006:
US$4.6 million) for the period then ended.


LEFKO-BANK OJSC: Arbitration Court Starts Bankruptcy Proceedings
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Arbitration Court of Moscow commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against OJSC Lefko-Bank Commercial Bank.  The case is docketed
under Case No.A40–80272/08–88-232B.


MAK-DREV LLC: Creditor Must File Claims by January 12
-----------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Mak-Drev (Timber Production) have until
Jan. 12, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         A. Maltabar
         Temporary Insolvency Manager
         Post User Box 619
         170006 Tver
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Tverskaya will convene on Feb. 17, 2009,
to hear bankruptcy supervision procedure.  The case is docketed
under Case No. A66–5450/08.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Mak-Drev
         Prospect Stroiteley 5a
         Maksatikha
         Tverskaya
         Russia


NEMANSKIY PULP: Under External Management Bankruptcy Procedure
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Arbitration Court of Kaliningradskaya has commenced external
management bankruptcy procedure on LLC Nemanskiy Pulp and Paper
Plant.  The Case is docketed under No. A21-2012/2008.

The External Insolvency Manager is:

         D. Shurakov
         Office 2
         Building 2
         Lomonosova Prospect 92
         163061 Arkhangelsk
         Russia

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Nemanskiy Pulp and Paper Plant
         Podgornaya Str. 3
         Neman
         238710 Kaliningradskaya
         Russia


NIKOS-TEKS LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12
---------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Nikos-Teks (Cotton Weaving, Cotton Fabric
Production) have until Feb. 12, 2009, to submit proofs of claims
to:

         A. Prokhodko
         Insolvency Manager
         Kuznetskiy Most Str. 6/3
         125009 Moscow
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Ivanovskaya commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent.  The
case is docketed under Case No. A17-1958/2007.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Nikos-Teks
         R.Luksemburg Str. 36
         Gavrilov Posad
         155000 Ivanovskaya
         Russia


OKB-TANTAL CJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of CJSC OKB-Tantal (Electric Gauge Production,
Scientific Researches) have until Feb. 12, 2009, to submit proofs
of claims to:

         A. Lyubimenko
         Insolvency Manager
         Pots User Box 3465
         410086 Saratov
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Saratovskaya commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent.  The
case is docketed under Case No. A-57–18682/08–226.


STAVROPOL-ELIT-STROY LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 12
---------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Stavropol-Elit-Stroy (TIN 2635078740, RVC
263501001) (Construction) have until Feb. 12, 2009, to submit
proofs of claims to:

         D. Perekhoda
         Insolvency Manager
         Office 19
         45 Parallel Str. 26
         355042 Stavropol
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Stavropol commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent.  The
case is docketed under Case No. A 63-16492/08-S5-8.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Stavropol-Elit-Stroy
         Apt. 7
         Vasileva Str. 49
         Stavropol
         Russia


TANTAL-INFRA LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by February 12
-----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Tantal-Infra (Securities) have until
Feb. 12, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         A. Lyubimenko
         Insolvency Manager
         Pots User Box 3465
         410086 Saratov
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Saratovskaya commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent.  The
case is docketed under Case No. A-57–18681/08–226.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Tantal-Infra
         Saratov
         Russia


TIMBER PRODUCERS: Creditors Must File Claims by Feb. 12
-------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Timber Producers' Union have until
Feb. 12, 2009, to submit proofs of claims to:

         Ye. Turubanov
         Insolvency Manager
         Post User Box 945
         Lenina Str. 60
         Syktyvkar
         167000 Komi
         Russia

The Arbitration Court of Komi commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent.  The case is
docketed under Case No. A29–5559/2008.

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Timber Producers’ Union
         Kirova Str. 29
         Sykryvkar
         Komi
         Russia


TROIKA DIALOG: Daimler Acquires 10% Stake in Kamaz for US$250 Mln
--------------------------------------------------------------
Daimler AG, Kamaz, Russian Technologies State Corporation and
Troika Dialog on Friday, December 12, 2008, signed an agreement in
Moscow governing the exclusive strategic partnership and outlining
the main principles and methods of cooperation between Kamaz
shareholders.

Under the terms of the agreement, Daimler will acquire a 10
percent stake in the share capital of Kamaz from Troika Dialog for
US$250 million to be paid in December 2008.  Another one-time
payment of up to US$50 million will be due in 2012 subject to
successful business performance of Kamaz.

In exchange, Daimler AG will receive a seat on the Kamaz Board of
Directors.  Furthermore other rights of Daimler being a minority
shareholder in Kamaz, as well as its status of the exclusive
strategic partner will be governed and secured by the agreement
signed Friday last week.

           Consistent Implementation of Daimler Trucks'
                 Global Excellence Strategy

The cooperation with Kamaz will enable Daimler's truck division -
Daimler Trucks - to enter the Russian volume market and is part of
the company's growth strategy in the BRIC countries.  The step is
another example of the consistent implementation of the Global
Excellence strategy, which Daimler Trucks has been successfully
pursuing for the past four years.  The strategy's four pillars are
the management of market cycles; operational efficiency programs;
the exploitation of market potential and new markets (particularly
new growth markets such as Russia); and future product generations
and technologies.

      Technology Transfer and Creation of Joint Projects

Kamaz and Daimler are aimed at mutually beneficial cooperation in
the sphere of technology transfers and a series of joint projects.
Daimler Trucks being the exclusive strategic partner will
contribute its advanced technologies to Kamaz.  The technology
transfers encompass various components, including the cab of the
second-generation Mercedes-Benz Actros.

Kamaz has production facilities, sales structures, and a good
retail network in Russia.  As a result, Kamaz will be an excellent
partner for the sale and service of Mitsubishi Fuso trucks to
Russian customers and will strongly support the market entry of
Mitsubishi Fuso.  Also conceivable would be joint projects
involving Mercedes-Benz buses.

In view of the expected increases in Russian import duties for
vehicles, Daimler Trucks' holding in Kamaz will give Daimler a
further strategic advantage.

"Daimler's strategic involvement strengthens Kamaz and makes our
company internationally competitive," says Sergei Kogogin, General
Director of Kamaz.

"I'm very happy about the conclusion of the holding agreement with
Kamaz, especially in view of the difficult economic environment we
currently face," says Andreas Renschler, the Daimler

Board of Management member responsible for Daimler Trucks.  "It
has allowed us to take the first step toward creating a hopefully
wider-ranging partnership in which the two companies can share
their development, production, and sales expertise."

             Russia Is Europe's Largest Truck Market

Russia has one of the largest regional truck markets in the world,
with total sales of more than 154,000 units >6 t in 2007. Despite
the current financial and economic crisis, the market is expected
to continue to grow over the next few years.  Demand will rise
particularly in the heavy-duty segment.

Kamaz was transformed into a joint stock company on August 23,
1990.  Kamaz vehicles are widely used throughout the CIS and are
exported to around 30 countries worldwide.  The company is the
leading seller of heavy-duty trucks in Russia.  Last year the
company sold more than 53,000 trucks, posting revenues of US$3.8
billion and reaching a market share of over 30%.  Today, about 25%
of its truck production is being exported — mainly to Kazakhstan,
the Ukraine, and Asia.

Daimler Trucks sold 1,300 new vehicles in Russia in 2007.  In line
with this development, Daimler Trucks is expanding its sales and
service network in the country and will also increase the number
of Mercedes-Benz service stations in the coming years.  Daimler
Trucks with its brands Mercedes-Benz, Fuso, and Freightliner is
already the leader in the segment for imported preowned trucks.

"This Agreement, reached in conditions of a global financial
crisis, carries strategic significance for Russia and the Russian
truck industry.  It gives testament to a high level of trust
toward the Russian machine building industry and the economy in
general, and to the readiness of Western companies, despite global
stagnation and the unfavorable state of affairs, to invest into
the Russian Federation," announced Sergei Chemezov, General
Director of the Russian Technologies State Corporation and
Chairman of the Kamaz Board of Directors.

"It goes without saying that this is a landmark transaction for
all involved parties: Daimler, Russian Technologies State
Corporation, Kamaz, and Troika Dialog as well as for the countries
that they represent – Russia and Germany" said Ruben Vardanian,
Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO, Troika Dialog Group.
"We are very glad that despite the current market conditions the
parties were able to close this deal.  This partnership will allow
Kamaz to bring its business to a new level by utilizing
experience, technology and know-how of its exclusive strategic
partner – Daimler AG – as well as to increase the shareholder
value of Kamaz in the long-term perspective."

                     About Troika Dialog Group

Headquartered in Moscow, Russia, Troika Dialog Group Ltd. --
http://www.troika.ru/eng/-- is a private investment bank.  The
company's core businesses include capital markets, investment
banking services, asset management and private equity.  The Group
has an extensive network of offices in Russia's 14 major cities,
and also in New York, London, Kiev and Cyprus.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Dec. 15, 2008, Standard & Poor's
Ratings Services said that it lowered its long-term counterparty
credit rating on Troika Dialog Group Ltd. to 'B+' from 'BB-' and
its Russia national scale rating to 'ruA' from 'ruAA-'.  The
outlook remains negative.

At the same time, S&P's affirmed its 'B' short-term counterparty
credit rating on the institution, the holding company of Russia's
Troika Dialog group.


* BALASHIKHA CITY: S&P Keeps "B" Rating, Gives Negative Outlook
---------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said it revised its outlook on
Balashikha City District, located in Moscow Oblast in the Russian
Federation, to negative from stable.  At the same time, the Russia
national scale rating was lowered to 'ruA-' from 'ruA'.  The 'B'
long-term issuer rating was affirmed.

"The outlook revision reflects the city district's weaker economic
prospects and, consequently, S&P's expectation of weaker budget
revenue growth and continued expenditure pressures, which mainly
stem from the decisions of higher layers of government," said
Standard & Poor's credit analyst Karen Vartapetov.

The ratings reflect the city district's high dependence on
decisions made by the Moscow Oblast (B-/Watch Neg/--) and the
sovereign.  This results in low revenue and expenditure
flexibility and continuing exposure to short-term budget loans,
while liquidity remains a weakness of the district.  The ratings
also incorporate S&P's concerns regarding the strength of
management's commitment to prioritizing debt service against other
expenditure, when faced with increased budgetary pressures, and
the need to support municipal companies.  These constraints are,
however, mitigated by Balashikha's strategic location near
Russia's capital, its low debt, and good budgetary performance
until 2007.

Balashikha's financial dependence on Moscow Oblast is of
particular concern when combined with its weak liquidity and the
Oblast's own financial difficulties, which could potentially lead
to additional expenditure responsibilities being handed down to
the district, without adequate compensation from the regional
level.  These risks will be exacerbated if the district is unable
to keep its commitment to service debt obligations under budgetary
pressure.

Transfers from the oblast are likely to drop to 25% of
Balashikha's revenues in 2008-2009, from 40% in 2007.  Conversely,
the city district's share of modifiable revenues is expected to
decrease to 30% in 2009-2010 from about 40% in 2008, due to
expected weaker revenues from residential housing construction
projects.

"The outlook is negative because S&P expects a slowdown of
Balashikha's economy, which will undermine budget revenue growth
in 2009-2010 and, coupled with expenditure pressures, might result
in weaker budgetary performance," said Mr. Vartapetov.  "It also
reflects S&P's concerns regarding the future of the city
district's interbudgetary relationship with Moscow Oblast and the
likelihood that its liquidity position will remain weak throughout
2009."

A revision of the outlook to stable will depend on the recovery of
economic and revenue growth, both in Balashikha and Moscow Oblast.
Balashikha's ability to adopt a more prudent approach to debt
policies, with longer maturities, to demonstrate a sustainably
stronger liquidity position, and to achieve operating surpluses of
about 10% in 2009-2010, could also support the ratings.

Alternatively, the ratings could come under pressure if the city
district suffers from weaker-than-expected financial performance,
with operating balances close to zero, or undertakes riskier
policies with higher exposure to short-term debt.


===============
S L O V E N I A
===============


* SLOVENIA: Commission Approves Bank Support Scheme
---------------------------------------------------
The European Commission has approved under EC Treaty state aid
rules a Slovenian support scheme to stabilize financial markets by
providing guarantees to eligible credit institutions to ensure
their access to financing.  The Commission found the measure to be
in line with its Guidance Communication on state aid to overcome
the financial crisis.  In particular, the scheme is non-
discriminatory, limited in time and scope, provides for behavioral
constraints to avoid abuses and is subject to a market-oriented
remuneration from the beneficiaries.  The Commission therefore
concluded that the scheme was an adequate means to remedy a
serious disturbance of the Slovenian economy and as such in line
with Article 87.3.b of the EC Treaty.

"I am satisfied that after extensive contacts with the Slovenian
authorities this bank support scheme strikes the right balance
between ensuring that banks in Slovenia will have access to
financing and making sure the beneficiaries do not enjoy an unfair
competitive advantage", commented Competition Commissioner Neelie
Kroes.

The state guarantee would cover, against remuneration, the
issuance of new short and medium term non-subordinated debt with a
maturity between 90 days and five years.  The scheme's overall
budget is capped at EUR12 billion.  Only solvent banks are allowed
to enter the scheme.  The Commission decision covers a period of
six months, following which Slovenia should terminate the scheme
or renotify its extension to the Commission.

The scheme contains elements of state aid but foresees safeguards
aimed at ensuring that the state intervention is proportionate,
limited to what is necessary to stimulate interbank lending and
adequate to reach this goal, in accordance with EU state aid
rules, as outlined in the Commission's  October 13 guidance
document.

In particular, the scheme provides for non-discriminatory access
as it will be open to all solvent Slovenian credit institutions,
including Slovenian subsidiaries of foreign banks.  To benefit
from the guarantee, participating banks are required to pay a
market-oriented fee, in line with recommendations from the
European Central Bank.

Moreover, beneficiaries will be subject to behavioral commitments
to avoid an abusive use of the state support.  These include
limitations on expansion and marketing and conditions for staff
remuneration or bonus payments.  In addition, Slovenia committed
to notify restructuring or liquidation plans for each beneficiary
that defaulted on its liabilities and as a consequence would cause
the guarantee to be called upon. Finally, Slovenia will report
periodically to the Commission on the implementation of the
scheme.

In light of these commitments and conditions, the Commission
concluded that the scheme would be an adequate means to restore
confidence on Slovenian financial markets and to boost interbank
lending.  The safeguards will ensure that the state support is
limited to what is necessary to stabilize the Slovenian financial
sector and that negative spill-over effects are minimized.


===========
S W E D E N
===========


CARNEGIE INVESTMENT: EU Commission Approves Swedish Rescue Aid
--------------------------------------------------------------
The European Commission has approved, under EC Treaty state aid
rules, emergency liquidity assistance worth EUR225 million
(SEK2.4 billion) that the Swedish authorities have granted to
Carnegie Investment Bank AB.  The Commission found the measure to
be in line with its Guidance Communication on state aid to
overcome the current financial crisis.  The measure constitutes an
adequate means to remedy a serious disturbance in the Swedish
economy while avoiding undue distortions of competition and is
therefore compatible with Article 87.3.b. of the EC Treaty.  In
particular, the measures are limited in time and scope and contain
sufficient safeguards to avoid abuses.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "The liquidity
assistance was necessary to avoid the failure of Carnegie Bank
which would have entailed a real risk for the stability of the
Swedish financial system.  The Commission is satisfied that the
emergency support is proportionate and does not give rise to undue
distortions of competition."

On October 27-28, 2008 the Swedish central bank granted
SEK2.4 billion special liquidity assistance to Carnegie Bank which
was facing urgent liquidity problems.  On November 10, 2008, as
Carnegie Bank's position had further deteriorated, the central
bank's assistance was replaced by an emergency loan of equivalent
size from the National Debt Office ("Riksgalden"). The National
Debt Office subsequently took over all of Carnegie Bank's shares,
which had been pledged as collateral.

The Commission found that there would have been a clear risk of
failure of Carnegie Bank in the absence of the Central Bank's
liquidity assistance and the emergency loan from the National Debt
Office.

The measures taken by the Swedish authorities were appropriate to
remedy Carnegie Bank's liquidity problems and restore confidence
in the Swedish financial markets.  In particular, the loans
provided did not go beyond what was necessary to save the bank and
the bank will refrain from any significant expansion. The aid is
approved as a temporary rescue measure and Sweden has made the
commitment to provide a liquidation plan or a restructuring plan
for Carnegie Bank by April 25, 2009.

Founded in 1803 as a trading company, Carnegie Investment Bank AB
is engaged in stockbroking, equity analysis, equity trading, asset
management and advice on corporate acquisitions in the Nordic
region.


=====================
S W I T Z E R L A N D
=====================


A. BRA LLC: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC A. Bra are requested to file their
proofs of claim by Dec. 31, 2008, to:

         Albert Brandenberger
         Zelglistrasse 4
         8311 Brutten
         Switzerland

The company is currently undergoing liquidation in Brutten.  The
decision about liquidation was accepted at an extraordinary
shareholders' meeting held on Oct. 15, 2008.


DORES INVESTMENT: Deadline to File Proofs of Claim Set Dec. 31
--------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC Dores Investment are requested to file
their proofs of claim by Dec. 31, 2008, to:

         Dr. Karljorg Landolt
         Liquidator Spielhof 14a
         8750 Glarus
         Switzerland

The company is currently undergoing liquidation in Glarus.  The
decision about liquidation was accepted at an extraordinary
shareholders' meeting held on Nov. 6, 2008.


GENERAL MOTORS: E.D. Mich. Preps for Chapter 11 Filing in Detroit
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The judges sitting in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern
District of Michigan entered an administrative order last week
giving Chief Judge Steven Rhodes the authority to assign "a very
large, complex case of national significance" to a specific
bankruptcy judge "after consulting with the other bankruptcy
judges," rather than using the traditional blind draw system.
Additionally, the administrative order provides that "the
bankruptcy judge to whom the [very large, complex case of national
significance] is assigned shall have the authority to assign
adversary proceedings and contested matters to other bankruptcy
judges as necessary and appropriate."  A copy of the order is
posted at http://www.mieb.uscourts.gov/notices/ao08-24.pdf

The Bankruptcy Court in Detroit announced this week that it is
accepting applications for temporary clerical "positions that may
become available in the next several months."

                    About General Motors

Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, General Motors Corp. (NYSE:
GM) -- http://www.gm.com/-- was founded in 1908.  GM employs
about 266,000 people around the world and manufactures cars and
trucks in 35 countries.  In 2007, nearly 9.37 million GM cars and
trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick,
Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel,
Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling.  GM's OnStar
subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and
information services.

GM Europe is based in Zurich, Switzerland, while General Motors
Latin America, Africa and Middle East is headquartered in
Miramar, Florida.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 10,
2008, General Motors Corporation's balance sheet at
Sept. 30, 2008, showed total assets of US$110.425 billion, total
liabilities of US$170.3 billion, resulting in a stockholders'
deficit of US$59.9 billion.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 11, 2008,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its ratings, including
the corporate credit rating, on General Motors Corp. to 'CCC+'
from 'B-' and removed them from CreditWatch, where they had been
placed with negative implications on Oct. 9, 2008.  S&P said that
the outlook is negative.

Fitch Ratings, as reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on
Nov. 11, 2008, placed the Issuer Default Rating of General Motors
on Rating Watch Negative as a result of the company's rapidly
diminishing liquidity position.  Given the current liquidity level
of US$16.2 billion and the pace of negative cash flows, Fitch
expects that GM will require direct federal assistance over the
next quarter and the forbearance of trade creditors in order to
avoid default.  With virtually no further access to external
capital and little potential for material asset sales, cash
holdings are expected to shortly reach minimum required operating
levels.  Fitch placed these on Rating Watch Negative:

-- Senior secured at 'B/RR1';
-- Senior unsecured at 'CCC-/RR5'.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on June 24, 2008,
DBRS has placed the ratings of General Motors Corp. and General
Motors of Canada Limited Under Review with Negative Implications.
The rating action reflects the structural deterioration of the
company's operations in North America brought on by high oil
prices and a slowing U.S. Economy.


GENERAL MOTORS: Will Stop Construction of Flint Factory
-------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that General Motors Corp. said that
it would stop construction works for a factory in Flint, Michigan.

According to The AP, GM is trying to conserve cash so it can
continue operations next year.  The factory, says the report, was
set to make 1.4-liter engines for GM's Chevrolet Cruze and the
Chevy Volt plug-in electric car.

Citing GM spokesperson Sharon Basel, The AP relates that the
construction delay may be temporary until the firm figures out its
cash situation.

The AP quoted Ms. Basel as saying, "Everything that involves heavy
cash outlays obviously is under review.  Our intent is to still go
forward with a new facility bringing that engine to Flint,
Michigan."

Sharon Terlep at The Wall Street Journal reports that GM said on
Tuesday it will proceed with plans to deliver its Chevrolet Volt
electric car by 2010, with or without government bailout.  WSJ
relates that The Volt is GM's most high-profile project

                     About General Motors

Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, General Motors Corp. (NYSE:
GM) -- http://www.gm.com/-- was founded in 1908.  GM employs
about 266,000 people around the world and manufactures cars and
trucks in 35 countries.  In 2007, nearly 9.37 million GM cars and
trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick,
Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel,
Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling.  GM's OnStar
subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and
information services.

GM Europe is based in Zurich, Switzerland, while General Motors
Latin America, Africa and Middle East is headquartered in
Miramar, Florida.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 10,
2008, General Motors Corporation's balance sheet at
Sept. 30, 2008, showed total assets of US$110.425 billion, total
liabilities of US$170.3 billion, resulting in a stockholders'
deficit of US$59.9 billion.

                         *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 11, 2008,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its ratings, including
the corporate credit rating, on General Motors Corp. to 'CCC+'
from 'B-' and removed them from CreditWatch, where they had been
placed with negative implications on Oct. 9, 2008.  S&P said that
the outlook is negative.

Fitch Ratings, as reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on
Nov. 11, 2008, placed the Issuer Default Rating of General Motors
on Rating Watch Negative as a result of the company's rapidly
diminishing liquidity position.  Given the current liquidity level
of US$16.2 billion and the pace of negative cash flows, Fitch
expects that GM will require direct federal assistance over the
next quarter and the forbearance of trade creditors in order to
avoid default.  With virtually no further access to external
capital and little potential for material asset sales, cash
holdings are expected to shortly reach minimum required operating
levels.  Fitch placed these on Rating Watch Negative:

-- Senior secured at 'B/RR1';
-- Senior unsecured at 'CCC-/RR5'.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on June 24, 2008,
DBRS has placed the ratings of General Motors Corp. and General
Motors of Canada Limited Under Review with Negative Implications.
The rating action reflects the structural deterioration of the
company's operations in North America brought on by high oil
prices and a slowing U.S. Economy.


NEOPTA LLC: Creditors Have Until December 31 to File Claims
-----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by LLC Neopta are requested to file their
proofs of claim by Dec. 31, 2008, to:

         Nicole Taugwalder
         Liquidator
         Im Hinterstuck 17
         4107 Ettingen
         Switzerland

The company is currently undergoing liquidation in Ettingen.  The
decision about liquidation was accepted at an extraordinary
shareholders' meeting held on Sept. 2, 2008.


NUMAX FINANCE: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline is Dec. 31
---------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by JSC Numax Finance und Leasing are
requested to file their proofs of claim by Dec. 31, 2008, to:

         Paul Gerny
         Liquidator
         Panoramastrasse
         6287 Aesch LU
         Switzerland

The company is currently undergoing liquidation in Aesch LU.  The
decision about liquidation was accepted at an extraordinary
shareholders' meeting held on Nov. 10, 2008.


TREUVERBUND JSC: Creditors' Proofs of Claim Due by Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors owed money by JSC Treuverbund are requested to file
their proofs of claim by Dec. 31, 2008, to:

         Roland Jundt
         Gellertstrasse 5
         4052 Basel
         Switzerland

The company is currently undergoing liquidation in Basel.  The
decision about liquidation was accepted at an extraordinary
shareholders' meeting held on Nov. 11, 2008.


=============
U K R A I N E
=============


DAK LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC DAK (EDRPOU 31300671) have until Jan. 1, 2009, to
submit proofs of claim to:

         Mrs. Viktoriya Androsova
         Temporary Insolvency Manager
         Yangel Str. 17/112
         Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine
         Tel: 8(056)792-59-10

The Arbitration Court of Dnipropetrovsk commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent on
Oct. 23, 2008.  The case is docketed as B 24/339-08.

         The Economic Court of Dnipropetrovsk
         Kujbishev Str. 1a
         49600 Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC DAK
         Dinamo Str. 10
         49000 Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine


FREGAT LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 2
---------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Trading Company Fregat (EDRPOU 34703049) have
until Jan. 2, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         LLC Legran-Finance-Ukraine
         Liquidator / Insolvency Manager
         P.O.B. 82
         01024 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Kiev commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 4, 2008.
The case is docketed as B 3/220-08.

         The Economic Court of Kiev
         Komintern Str. 16
         01032 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Trading Company Fregat
         40 years of Oct. Str. 36
         Boyarka
         Kiev
         Ukraine


LEDA OJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
--------------------------------------------------
Creditors of OJSC Leda (EDRPOU 30020733) have until
Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Mr. Aleksey Scherban
         Temporary Insolvency Manager
         P.O.B. 157
         01030 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Kiev commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Aug. 5, 2008.
The case is docketed as 49/212/b.

         The Economic Court of Kiev
         B. Hmelnitskij Boulevard 44-B
         01030 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         OJSC Leda
         Amurskaya Str. 8
         03022 Kiev
         Ukraine


LIVIY LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
--------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC LIVIY (EDRPOU 33199733) have until
Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         LLC Octopus
         Liquidator
         P.O.B. 72
         03115 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Kiev commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 28, 2008.
The case is docketed as 44/353-b.

         The Economic Court of Kiev
         B. Hmelnitskij Boulevard 44-B
         01030 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Liviy
         Gonchar str.
         Kiev
         Ukraine


MEGATRADESYSTEM LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Megatradesystem (EDRPOU 35497530) have until
Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Mrs. Oksana Venskaya
         Temporary Insolvency Manager
         Rylsky Str. 137
         49000 Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Dnipropetrovsk commenced bankruptcy
proceedings against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov.
18, 2008.  The case is docketed as B 40/102-08.

         The Economic Court of Dnipropetrovsk
         Kujbishev Str. 1a
         49600 Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Megatradesystem
         Chervonaya Square, 5-A
         49000 Dnipropetrovsk
         Ukraine


PEKTIN CJSC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 2
----------------------------------------------------
Creditors of CJSC Pektin of Ukraine (EDRPOU 30425498) have until
Jan. 2, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Bar Interregional State Tax Inspection
         Liquidator
         K. Marks Str. 5/2
         Bar
         23000 Vinnica
         Ukraine
         Tel: 8(04341)2-24-34

The Arbitration Court of Vinnica commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 13, 2008.
The case is docketed as 5/258-08.

         The Economic Court of Vinnica
         Hmelnickiy Str. 7
         21036 Vinnica
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         CJSC Pektin of Ukraine
         Krasnoarmeyskaya Str. 3
         Bar
         23000 Vinnica
         Ukraine


PROMIN LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
---------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Agricultural LLC Promin have until Jan. 1, 2009, to
submit proofs of claim to:

         Mr. D. Leonchenko
         Liquidator
         Pobeda Str. 13/9
         Zimogoriya
         Slavianoserbsky
         93740 Lugansk
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Lugansk commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 7, 2008.
The case is docketed as 22/41b.

         The Economic Court of Lugansk
         Geroiv VVV Square 3a
         91000 Lugansk
         Ukraine


QUATRO-CENTER LLC: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC QUATRO-CENTER (EDRPOU 35196348) have until
Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Mr. I. Konstantinov
         Liquidator
         P.O.B. 124
         04111 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Kiev commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 24, 2008.
The case is docketed as 23/206-b.

         The Economic Court of Kiev
         B. Hmelnitskij Boulevard 44-B
         01030 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Quatro-Center
         Panas Mirny Str. 16/13A
         Kiev
         Ukraine


SKABAT METAL: Creditors Must File Claims by January 1
-----------------------------------------------------
Creditors of LLC Skabat Metal Service (EDRPOU 34925841) have until
Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Private Enterprise Fragris
         Liquidator
         P.O.B. 72
         03115 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Kiev commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 28, 2008.
The case is docketed as 44/352-b.

         The Economic Court of Kiev
         B. Hmelnitskij Boulevard 44-B
         01030 Kiev
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         LLC Skabat Metal Service
         Melnikov Str. 12
         Kiev
         Ukraine


STAROBELSK MECHANICAL: Creditors Must File Claims by Jan. 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of CJSC Starobelsk Mechanical Plant (EDRPOU 00901335)
have until Jan. 1, 2009, to submit proofs of claim to:

         Mr. Roy Alexander
         Liquidator
         Sovetskaya Str. 7
         Raygorodka
         Novoaydarsky
         93543 Lugansk
         Ukraine

The Arbitration Court of Lugansk commenced bankruptcy proceedings
against the company after finding it insolvent on Nov. 14, 2008.
The case is docketed as 22/43b.

         The Economic Court of Lugansk
         Geroiv VVV Square 3a
         91000 Lugansk
         Ukraine

The Debtor can be reached at:

         CJSC Starobelsk Mechanical Plant
         R. Luxembourg Str. 76
         Starobelsk
         2700 Lugansk
         Ukraine


===========================
U N I T E D   K I N G D O M
===========================


ADREVENUE LTD: Goes Into Administration
---------------------------------------
Suzanne Bearne at new media age reports that ad network Adrevenue
Ltd has gone into administration after talks with potential
buyers, including Media Corp, collapsed.

"The business entered into administration last week.  I'm
currently working with administrators to ensure creditors get the
funds owed," Paul Quarterman, former CEO Adrevenue, was quoted by
new media age as saying.

According to new media age, eSpot Digital is now being promoted as
the "the new brand name for Adrevenue".

It is understood that eSpot Digital has secured a number of former
Adrevenue publisher contracts for its network, new media states.

The new company is already under investigation by IASH for
claiming membership of the ad network trade body, new media age
notes.

Adrevenue Ltd -- http://www.adrevenue.co.uk/-- is an online
marketing house based in Plymouth, England.  It places online
advertising campaigns for for clients across its own premium
branded networks and proven partner networks across the world.

The company supplies inventory for CPM, CPC and CPA campaigns. It
has also developed a competency in placing and consulting for
Search Engine Marketing campaigns as well as Search Engine
optimization.

The company was started in 2000 with offices in Mayfair, central
London.


BELLFLOWER HOMES: Appoints Joint Liquidators from KPMG
------------------------------------------------------
Kevin Roy Mawer and Richard Dixon Fleming of KPMG LLP were
appointed joint liquidators of Bellflower Homes Ltd. on  Nov. 28,
2009, for the creditors' voluntary winding-up proceeding.

The company can be reached through KPMG LLP at:

         8 Princes Parade
         Liverpool
         L3 1QH
         England


BRITISH AIRWAYS: Sydney Court Imposes US$5 Mln Price-Fixing Fine
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Federal Court in Sydney on Thursday, December 11, 2008,
ordered British Airways PLC to pay US$5 million in pecuniary
penalties for breaching the price fixing provisions of the Trade
Practices Act 1974.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission instituted
proceedings on October 28, 2008 alleging British Airways reached
an understanding with Lufthansa Cargo Aktiengesellschaft
(Lufthansa) in relation to the imposition of fuel surcharges on
some of its international air cargo services between 2002 and
early 2006.

British Airways admitted it arrived at an illegal understanding
with Lufthansa providing for the exchange of information relating
to the proposed application by each of them of a fuel surcharge on
some of their international air cargo services and, that in
arriving at and giving effect to that understanding, it had the
purpose and effect of fixing a component of the price (i.e. the
fuel surcharge) for the supply of international air cargo
services.

"This case should send a very strong message to cartelists that
the ACCC will not relent in its pursuit and the bringing to
account of those who engage in illegal behavior," ACCC Chairman
Graeme Samuel said.

"There are no safe havens for illegal cartel conduct.

"This action and the recent introduction of the Bill criminalizing
cartel conduct will create a much stronger disincentive for
cartels forming and continuing.  It will also step up the pressure
on cartel members to take advantage of the ACCC's immunity and
cooperation policies to report their fellow cartel members before
they find themselves facing possible time behind bars," Mr. Samuel
said.

The penalty handed down against British Airways reflects the
serious nature of the cartel contraventions and its share of the
Australian segment of the market.  However, they also take into
account the level of cooperation British Airways provided to the
ACCC's investigations.

"British Airways has supplied significant information as to its
own role and that of others which is continuing to assist the
ACCC's ongoing investigations into the conduct of other airlines,"
Mr. Samuel said.

Justice Lindgren also made orders restraining British Airways from
engaging in similar conduct for a period of five years, and pay
US$200,000 contribution towards the ACCC's costs.

Justice Lindgren indicated he would publish his reasons in January
2009.

                  About British Airways

Headquartered in Harmondsworth, England, British Airways Plc --
http://www.ba.com/-- operates of international and domestic
scheduled and charter air services for the carriage of passengers,
freight and mail, and provides of ancillary
services.  The British Airways group consists of British Airways
plc and a number of subsidiary companies including in particular
British Airways Holidays Ltd.  and British Airways Travel Shops
Ltd.  BA has offices in India and Guatemala.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Nov. 18, 2008, Moody's Investors
Service placed all ratings of British Airways plc (Baa3 Corporate
Family Rating - CFR); Ba1 senior unsecured and the Ba2 rating of
the perpetual guaranteed preferred securities on review for
possible downgrade.


CHANNEL 4: Germany's RTL Eyes Takeover
--------------------------------------
BreakingNews.ie reports that RTL, a German media group, is eyeing
a takeover of Channel 4, which is facing a funding crisis.

Citing the Sunday Times, the report relates RTL is said to have
asked investment bank JP Morgan to look at a possible takeover bid
for the British broadcaster.

According to the report, any deal could reportedly cost RTL as
much as GBP500 million (EUR569 million).

Channel 4, the report recounts, is suffering from a funding gap It
has previously warned that it would run out of money by 2012 if a
solution is not secured, the report notes.

In a TCR-Europe report on Oct. 1, 2008, the Daily Telegraph
disclosed media regulator Ofcom reportedly outlined funding
options for Channel 4.  Among these is granting the broadcaster a
share of the BBC license fee, or allowing it to share in profits
from the BBC's commercial arm.

Channel 4 has cash reserves of up to GBP200 million a year, but a
spokesman said it would not begin to spend these unless a
financial settlement is agreed with regulators and Government, the
Telegraph added.

Channel 4 -- http://www.channel4.com/-- transmits across the
whole of the U.K., except some parts of Wales, which are covered
by the Welsh language S4C.  It is available on all digital
platforms (terrestrial, satellite and cable) as well as through
traditional analogue transmission.

Channel 4 also operates a number of other services, including the
free-to-air digital TV channels E4, More4 and Film4, and an ever-
growing range of online activities at channel4.com, including the
broadband service FourDocs and Channel 4's bespoke video-on-demand
service 4oD.  The Film4 production division produces and co-
produces feature films for the UK and global markets.


G. MIDDLETON: Goes Into Administration; KPMG Appointed
------------------------------------------------------
The directors of G. Middleton Ltd, a building and joinery firm
based in Appleby in Cumbria, have appointed Paul Flint and Brian
Green from KPMG Restructuring in Manchester as joint
administrators of the business.

The company, which has been trading for more than 30 years,
employed 48 people from its Appleby base and had an annual
turnover of GBP2.5 million.  All 48 members of staff have been
made redundant as a result of the administration.

Paul Flint, associate partner, KPMG Restructuring in Manchester,
commented, "We have been speaking with various parties with
regards to options for the business but at this stage, it's not
something we can continue to trade as administrators.  We will do
everything we can to assist those employees who have been made
redundant through this difficult period.  Furthermore, we are also
trying to assist those customers who have outstanding orders with
the firm."

                    About KPMG LLP (UK)

KPMG LLP (UK) -- http://kpmg.co.uk/-- provides professional
services including audit, tax, financial and risk advisory.  KPMG
in the UK has over 10,000 partners and staff working in 22 offices
and is part of a strong global network of members firms. As part
of KPMG Europe it has merged with its German and Swiss firms,
making it the largest integrated accounting firm in Europe.


HUSH BISHOPS: Names Joint Liquidators from Tenon Recovery
---------------------------------------------------------
A. J. Pear and I. Cadlock of Tenon Recovery were appointed joint
liquidators of Hush Bishops Stortford Ltd. on Dec. 3, 2008, for
the creditors' voluntary winding-up proceeding.

The company can be reached at:

         Hush Bishops Stortford Ltd.
         2nd. Floor
         Cambridge House
         Cambridge Road
         Harlow
         Essex
         CM20 2EQ
         England


IMAGINE PRESTIGE: Names Joint Administrators from BDO Stoy
----------------------------------------------------------
Shay Bannon and Antony David Nygate of BDO Stoy Hayward LLP were
appointed joint administrators of Imagine Prestige Ltd. on Dec. 3,
2008.

The company can be reached through BDO Stoy Hayward LLP at:

         55 Baker Street
         London
         W1U 7EU
         England


LONDON SCOTTISH: Taps Joint Administrators from Ernst & Young
-------------------------------------------------------------
On Dec. 2, 2008, Thomas Merchant Burton and Simon Allport of Ernst
& Young LLP were appointed joint administrators of:

   -- Glengall Estates Ltd.,
   -- London Scottish Insurance Services Ltd.,
   -- London ScottisH Computer Services Ltd.,
   -- London Scottish Finance Ltd., and
   -- London Scottish Broking Ltd.

The company can be reached at:

         201 Deansgate
         Manchester
         M3 3NW
         England


LUDGATE FUNDING: Fitch Junks Ratings on Three Tranches
------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has downgraded four tranches and affirmed the
remaining five from the Ludgate Funding Plc Series 2006-01 FF1
RMBS transaction, composed of loans originated by Freedom Funding
Limited.  The Outlooks on five tranches have been revised to
Negative from Stable.

The downgrades are due to the lack of a basis rate swap and the
impact this is having on the transaction, given the wide
divergence between Libor and the Bank of England base rate.  The
rating actions include revised assumptions on the spread between
BBR and Libor; therefore the ratings of the junior notes could
potentially be upgraded again if the spread were to reduce rapidly
and remain at the lower level.  The performance of the underlying
loans remains relatively good.

The reserve fund had been fully utilized as of the December 2008
interest payment date.  Due to the absence of the reserve fund and
reduced excess revenue to cover losses, GBP229,511 still remains
written to the Class E principal deficiency ledger.  In addition,
the lack of available revenue has meant that the transaction has
drawn on its liquidity facility, provided by Barclays Bank PLC, to
meet interest payments on the most junior notes.  The draw had
amounted to GBP111,392.  Fitch expects that, with the current
spread between Libor and BBR persisting, the transaction will
continue to rely on its liquidity facility to cover interest
shortfalls at future IPDs.

It is important to note that the liquidity facility will not be
available to pay interest on the subordinated notes if the PDL for
that note class is at 50% or more of the then-outstanding notes in
that class.  At this point interest on these notes will be
deferred.  In addition, there is an arrears trigger on the
liquidity facility which restricts its use for the Class B note
should loans 90 days or more in arrears exceed 25% of the
principal outstanding under the notes and restricts its use for
Class C, D and E notes should loans 90 days or more in arrears
exceed 20% of principal outstanding under the notes in issue.
This ratio is currently at 10.2%.

Loans in arrears by more than three months including current
repossessions, accounting for 6.07% of the current pool.  During
the latest IPD, three properties were sold with a loss severity of
18.39%.  However, the limited excess spread means that although
losses are relatively low these have not been entirely written
off.  Unless excess spread increases in the future any loss on
repossessed properties will remain on the PDL, increasing the
potential loss to note holders.

The rating actions are:

Ludgate Funding plc Series 2006-01 FF1:

  -- Class A2a (ISIN XS0274267862): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class A2b (ISIN XS0274271203): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class Ba (ISIN XS0274268241): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class Bb (ISIN XS0274271898): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class C (ISIN XS0274272359): downgraded to 'BBB' from 'A';
     Outlook revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class D (ISIN XS0274272862): downgraded to 'CCC' from 'BBB';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR4' assigned

  -- Class E (ISIN XS0274269645): downgraded to 'CC' from 'BB';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR5' assigned

  -- Class S (ISIN XS0274270221): downgraded to 'C' from 'B';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR5' assigned

  -- MERCs: affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Rating Outlooks for European Structured Finance tranches provide
forward-looking information to the market.  An Outlook indicates
the likely direction of any rating change over a one- to two-year
period.


PREFERRED RESIDENTIAL: Fitch Junks Ratings on Four Tranches
-----------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has downgraded 10 tranches and affirmed the
remaining classes from the Preferred Residential Securities Plc
Series residential mortgage-backed securities transactions.

The rating actions are the result of the combined effect of the
deterioration in the UK housing and mortgage market alongside
worse-than-expected transaction performance.  Reduced levels of
excess spread and increasing loss severity levels have resulted in
a reserve fund draw for PRS 05-2, and reserve fund draws are also
expected by Fitch to occur in PRS 05-1 and PRS 06-1 in future
periods.  All three transactions have continued to see increases
in arrears and loans in possession.  Following the September
Interest Payment Date loans by more than three months in arrears,
including current repossessions, equal to 27.8%, 26.74% and 22.95%
of the current collateral balance, for PRS 05-1, 05-2 and 06-1,
respectively.

The weighted average loss severity on sold repossessions has also
seen increases in recent periods to 15.28%, 24.8% and 25.58%, for
PRS 05-1, 05-2 and 06-1, respectively, for September 2008 interest
payment date.  Fitch expects loss severity figures for all UK non-
conforming transactions to continue to deteriorate due to the
declining housing market.  The higher loss severity, combined with
increasing levels of repossessions, represents a growing risk for
these transactions.

PRS 05-1 PLC has counterparty exposure to Swiss Re, via a currency
swap and an interest rate cap.  The withdrawal of the rating of
Swiss Re by Fitch has not has an impact on the ratings of these
transactions.

The ratings are:

Preferred Residential Securities 05-1 plc

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0217069656): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0217637213): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0217069813) : affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  C1c (ISIN XS0217070076): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  D1c (ISIN XS0217070829): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     Negative

  -- Class  E (ISIN XS0217071041): downgraded to 'B+' from 'BB';
     Outlook remains Negative

Preferred Residential Securities 05-2 plc

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0234203684 ): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0234204732): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0234207594): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0234208485): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable


  -- Class  C1a (ISIN XS0234209020): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  C1c (ISIN XS0234209459): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  D1c (ISIN XS0234212594): downgraded to 'BB' from
     'BBB-' (BBB minus); Outlook remains Negative

  -- Class  E1c (ISIN XS0234213642): downgraded to 'B' from 'BB';
     Outlook Remains Negative

  -- Class  ETc (ISIN XS0234214533): downgraded to 'B-' (B minus)
     from 'BB'; Outlook Remains Negative

  -- Class  FTc (ISIN XS0234215340): downgraded to 'CCC' from 'B';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR4' assigned

Preferred Residential Securities 06-1 plc

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0243656625): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2b (ISIN XS0243704532): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0243663837): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC (ISIN XS0243706826): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0243655577): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0243665022): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  C1a (ISIN XS0243658670): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  C1c (ISIN XS0243665964): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  D1a: (ISIN XS0243659728) downgraded to 'BB' from
     'BBB-' (BBB minus); Outlook remains Negative

  -- Class  D1c (ISIN XS0243666939): downgraded to 'BB' from
     'BBB-' (BBB minus); Outlook remains Negative

  -- Class  E1c (ISIN XS0243669529): downgraded to 'CCC' from
     'BB'; Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR1' assigned

  -- Class  ETc (ISIN XS0243673984): downgraded to 'CC' from 'BB';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR4' assigned

  -- Class  FTc (ISIN XS0243675336): downgraded to 'C' from 'B';
     Distressed Recovery Rating of 'DR6' assigned


RESIDENTIAL MORTGAGE: Fitch Cuts Ratings on Two Tranches to Low-B
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has upgraded 16, downgraded four and affirmed 82
tranches of the Residential Mortgage Securities plc series' UK
Nonconforming RMBS transactions.  Outlooks have also been revised.

Older vintage RMS transactions such as RMS 16, 17, 18 and 19 have
been performing in line with the agency's expectations.  Rating
upgrades within these transactions reflect the strong build up of
credit enhancement, seasoning and the collateral performance.  It
is also important to note that, with exception of RMS 19, the
reserve funds featured in these deals are non-amortizing, thus
providing significant support to the notes.  Currently, RMS 16,
17, 18 and 19 have only 6.58%, 9.36%, 12.92% and 15.58% of their
notes outstanding, respectively.  The weighted average loss
severity figures for these transactions have been relatively low
in comparison to newer vintage transactions within this series and
other UK Nonconforming transactions.  As of their September
investor reports, the Fitch calculated loss severities have been
approximately, 12.86%, 13.28%, 11.84% and 10.58% in respect to RMS
16, 17, 18 and 19.

The less seasoned transactions within the series, RMS 20, 21 and
22, have been experiencing higher levels of arrears in their early
stages.  The high level of arrears will trigger the performance
conditions within these transactions.  The agency expects RMS 20
to revert to a sequential amortization from pro-rata, by the next
interest payment date due to the arrears levels breaching the
triggers.  As of the September 08 IPD, three months arrears have
risen to 22.21%, and by the end of September it had breached the
performance trigger set at 22.5% both for reserve fund
amortization and pro-rata pay-down of the notes.

The RMS 20 transaction included a reverse turbo feature, which had
paid down the B2a note with available excess spread, substituting
subordination for over-collateralization as a form of credit
enhancement.  As of the September 08 investor report, the
transaction benefits from GBP10.3 million of additional support to
the notes via over-collateralization.  This amount will be reduced
by the amount of losses being realized throughout the life of the
transaction until it is fully depleted.

With cumulative losses at 1.49% and 1.3%, respectively for RMS 21
and 22, the loss severity experienced on sold repossessions for
these transactions has been higher than earlier transactions from
this series.  The current weighted average loss severity since
closing stood at 19.13% for RMS 21 and 22.99% for RMS 22 as of
their latest IPD.  Fitch's expectation that UK economic conditions
will continue to deteriorate, and significantly, that house price
declines will continue, will negatively impact these transactions.

As a result of this outlook, Fitch has downgraded the class B1
notes of RMS 22 by one notch to 'BBB-'(BBB minus) and the class B2
note by one notch to 'B'.  The total cumulative value of
properties in repossession has risen to 3.52% from 2.88%, and the
cumulative percentage of sold properties has risen to 5.90% from
5.72%.  Both RMS 19 and 21 have counterparty exposure to Swiss Re,
via a basis point swap and an interest rate cap provider and as a
currency swap provider.  The withdrawal of Swiss Re rating
coverage by Fitch has not had an impact on the ratings of RMS 19
and 21.

Ratings are:

Residential Mortgage Securities 16 plc:

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0175735439): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2a DAC (ISIN XS0175735942): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2b (ISIN XS0175736593): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2b DAC (ISIN XS0175737211): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0175737724): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC (ISIN XS0175738375): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1b (ISIN XS0175738532): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0175738706): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN XS0175739001): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M2b (ISIN XS0175740512): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0175740785): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0175740868): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA-'
      (AA minus); Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0175741080): upgraded to 'AAA' from
     'AA-'(AA minus); Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0175741593): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 17 plc:

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0186352083): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2a DAC (ISIN XS0186609540): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2b (ISIN XS0186353990): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2b DAC (ISIN XS0186610639): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0186355268): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC (ISIN XS0186612254): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN XS0186355938): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1b (ISIN XS0186356407): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0186357470): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN XS0186358288): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0186359849): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0186369210): upgraded to 'AA' from 'A+';
     Outlook remains Positive

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0186370143): upgraded to 'AA' from 'A+';
     Outlook remains Positive

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0186662432): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 18 plc:

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0195867071): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2a DAC 2009 (ISIN XS0195867584): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2b (ISIN XS0195868046): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2b DAC 2009 (ISIN XS0195868806): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0195869283): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC 2009 (ISIN XS0195870026): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN XS0195870455): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0195875413): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0195876064): upgraded to 'AA' from 'A+';
     Outlook remains Positive

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0195876817): upgraded to 'A' from 'BBB+';
     Outlook remains Positive

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0195877039): upgraded to 'A' from 'BBB+';
     Outlook remains Positive

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0195910343): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 19 plc:

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0203538052): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2a DAC 2009 (ISIN XS0203543722): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0203542088): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC 2009 (ISIN XS0203540389): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN XS0203538300): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0203542245): upgraded to 'AAA' from 'AA+';
     Outlook revised to Stable from Positive

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN XS0203538482): affirmed at 'A+'; Outlook
     Positive

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0203542591): affirmed at 'A+'; Outlook
     Positive

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0203538649): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     Positive

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0203542674): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     Positive

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0203547558): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 20 plc:

  -- Class  A2a (ISIN XS0213175788): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2a DAC 2010 (ISIN XS0213206336): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0213176596): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c DAC 2010 (ISIN XS0213207490): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN XS0213177214): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0213178022): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN XS0213178709): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0213179343): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0213180432): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0213180945): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0213406696): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 21 Plc:

  -- Class  A3a (ISIN US76112VBD73): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A3a-2010 DAC (ISIN US76112VBK17): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A3c (ISIN US76112VBF22): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A3c-2010 DAC (ISIN US76112VBM72): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN US76112VAG14): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN US76112VAH96): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN US76112VAJ52): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN US76112VAK26): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN US76112VAL09): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN US76112VAM81): affirmed at 'BBB'; Outlook
     revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class  B2a (ISIN US76112VAN64): downgraded to 'BB-'(BB minus)
     from 'BB'; Outlook remains Negative

  -- MERCs (ISIN US76112VAW63) affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Residential Mortgage Securities 22 plc:
  -- Class  A2c (ISIN XS0259417482): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A2c-2009 DAC (ISIN XS0259424009): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A2c-2011 DAC (ISIN XS0259429651): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A3a (ISIN XS0259417565): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A3a-2009 DAC (ISIN XS0259425071): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A3a-2011 DAC (ISIN XS0259430154): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A3c (ISIN XS0259418290): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  A3c-2009 DAC (ISIN XS0259427010): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  A3c-2011 DAC (ISIN XS0259431392): affirmed at 'AAA';
     Outlook Stable

  -- Class  M1a (ISIN XS0259418456): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M1c (ISIN XS0259418530): affirmed at 'AA'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2a (ISIN XS0259418704): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  M2c (ISIN XS0259418969): affirmed at 'A'; Outlook
     Stable

  -- Class  B1a (ISIN XS0259419264): downgraded to 'BBB-'(BBB
     minus) from 'BBB'; Outlook revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class  B1c (ISIN XS0259419421): downgraded to 'BBB-'(BBB
     minus) from 'BBB'; Outlook revised to Negative from Stable

  -- Class  B2 (ISIN XS0259419777): downgraded to 'B' from 'BB';
     Outlook remains Negative

  -- MERCs (ISIN XS0259420353): affirmed at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Rating Outlooks for European Structured Finance tranches provide
forward-looking information to the market.  An Outlook indicates
the likely direction of any rating change over a one- to two-year
period.


SONAS AUTOMOTIVE: In Administration; Pwc Appointed
--------------------------------------------------
Matthew Hammond, Mark Hopkins and Colin Haig of
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP were appointed joint administrators of
Sonas Automotive Ltd, Sonas Investments Ltd and Sonas Group Ltd on
December 15, 2008.

The company, which has plants in Wantage, Oxfordshire and Tyseley,
Birmingham, is a major supplier of body in white (assembled car
body sheet metal), engine and trim components and assemblies to
the European automotive industry.  The company employs around 200
staff across the two sites.

The company was placed into administration due to the current
uncertainty in the automotive sector and as a result of the recent
administration of its largest customer.

Matthew Hammond, partner and joint administrator at
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP said: "The difficulties facing the
automotive industry at this time have been well documented and it
is unfortunate that this company has been forced into
administration partly as a result of the administration of its
largest customer, and difficulties within Sonas' business
interests in France."

"We are pro-actively encouraging expressions of interest in the
business, as we attempt to secure a future for the business.  The
enormity of this task in the current environment cannot be over-
emphasized particularly as much of the industry is now in a
prolonged holiday period shut-down."

"We have spoken today with all key suppliers and are grateful for
their continued support of the business as many have agreed to
provide ongoing key supplies.  In addition, we have met with as
many employees as possible at the Tyseley and Wantage plants, and
confirmed that we are reviewing the position of the business and
the impact this will have on short-term job security."

"We are in dialogue with all key customers many of whom are based
here in the Midlands and seeking immediate support for the
business and its scheduled production this week and for early
2009."

"We are also in discussion with the administrators of Wagon, which
we hope will remain a significant customer, but it also faces
similar discussions with its own customers."

Prospective buyers should contact Leigh Bridger at
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP on 0121 265 5198.

           About PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP -- http://www.pwc.co.uk/-- provides
industry-focused assurance, tax and advisory services.  It has
more than 16,000 partners and staff in offices around the UK.


TRIPLAS III: Moody's Reviews Low-B Ratings on Two Note Classes
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded and left on review for
further possible downgrade its ratings of four classes of notes
issued by Triplas III Limited.

The transaction is a static synthetic CDO referencing corporate
assets and ABS assets (mainly First and Second Lien Prime,
Subprime, Credit Cards, and Auto and personal Loans of the 2002 to
2007 vintages).

According to Moody's, the rating actions are the result of
deterioration in the credit quality of the transaction's reference
portfolio, which includes but is not limited to exposure to Lehman
Brothers Holdings Inc., which filed for protection under Chapter
11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code on September 15, 2008; Fannie Mae
and Freddie Mac, which were placed into the conservatorship of the
U.S. government on September 8, 2008.  The transaction also has a
significant exposure to other corporate names which continue to
deteriorate in the current economic environment.  This will weigh
on the ratings of the tranches in this transaction.

Moody's initially analyzed and continues to monitor this
transaction using primarily the methodology and its supplements
for corporate synthetic CDOs and ABS CDOs as described in Moody's

Special Reports below:

  -- Moody's Approach To Rating Synthetic CDOs (July 2003)

  -- Moody's Revisits Its Assumptions Regarding Corporate Default
     (and Asset) Correlations for CDOs (November 2004)

  -- Understanding Collateral Risks of Funded Synthetics in CDOs
     (June 2006)

  -- Moody's Approach to Rating Multisector CDOs (September 2000)

  -- Moody's Approach To Rating Synthetic Resecuritizations
     (October 2003)

  -- Moody's Revisits its Assumptions Regarding Structured Finance
     Default (and Asset) Correlations for CDOs (June 2005)

  -- Modeling Recovery Rates in European CDOs

The rating actions are:

Triplas III Limited:

(1) Class A EUR23,500,000 Secured Floating Rate Credit-Linked
Notes due 2010

  -- Current Rating: Baa1, on review for possible downgrade
  -- Prior Rating: Aa2
  -- Prior Rating Date: 26 September 2007

(2) Class B EUR29,000,000 Secured Floating Rate Credit-Linked
Notes due 2010

  -- Current Rating: Baa3, on review for possible downgrade
  -- Prior Rating: A2
  -- Prior Rating Date: 20 June 2008

(3) Class C EUR21,000,000 Secured Floating Rate Credit-Linked
Notes due 2010

  -- Current Rating: Ba3, on review for possible downgrade
  -- Prior Rating: Baa2
  -- Prior Rating Date: 20 June 2008

(4) Class D EUR1,000,000 Secured Floating Rate Credit-Linked
Notes due 2010

  -- Current Rating: B1, on review for possible downgrade
  -- Prior Rating: Baa3
  -- Prior Rating Date: 20 June 2008


VIRGIN MEDIA: To Repay GBP300 Million of Senior Bank Debt
---------------------------------------------------------
Virgin Media Inc. has given notice to the Agent under its senior
credit facilities that it intends to repay GBP 300 million of its
senior credit facilities on or about December 23, 2008.  Virgin
Media will make the GBP300 million repayment using cash on its
balance sheet.

In accordance with the recent amendment of its senior credit
facilities, the changes to the amortization schedule of the A
tranches and the final maturity date of the revolving facility, as
well as the relaxation of the financial covenant ratios, are
conditional upon Virgin Media's repayment of GBP487 million of
debt.  This represents 20% (GBP416 million) of the amounts
currently outstanding under the A tranches to those lenders and
the simultaneous payment (totaling GBP71 million) to those B
lenders who have not consented to relinquish their pro rata right
to prepayments when it makes repayments under the A tranches.

Virgin Media has until May 10, 2009 to pay the remaining
GBP187 million due to satisfy the repayment condition and has an
option, exercisable at a cost of GBP1.5 million, to extend that
deadline until August 10, 2009.

After repayment of 20% of the A tranches in satisfaction of the
repayment condition and pro rata payments to non-consenting B
lenders, the Company's new amortization schedule under its senior
facilities agreement will be as follows:

March 2010                   GBP33 million
September 2010               GBP172 million
March 2011                   GBP288 million
June 2012                    GBP1,167 million
September 2012               GBP1,910 million
March 2013                   GBP300 million

The lenders who have individually consented to the new provisions
governing the new A2 and A3 tranches and revolving facility will
enjoy a margin increase of 1.375% compared to the margins on the A
and A1 tranches and revolving facility, with effect from the
satisfaction of the remaining repayment condition.  The lenders
who have individually consented to the new provisions governing
the new B7 to B12 tranches benefited from a margin increase of
1.50% compared to the margins on the B1 to B6 tranches, effective
as of November 10, 2008.

Additionally, in November 2008, Virgin Media paid GBP49.0 million
in fees to its lenders and advisors in connection with the
amendments.  A remaining GBP11.5 million in fees is payable to the
consenting A lenders upon full satisfaction of the repayment
condition.

                   About Virgin Media

Headquartered in London, England, Virgin Media Inc. (fka NTL
Inc.) (NASDAQ: VMED) -- http://virginmedia.com/-- provides
broadband, digital television, telephony, content and
communications services, reaching over 50% of the U.K. homes and
85% of the U.K. businesses.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the TCR-Europe on October 17, 2008, Fitch Ratings
affirmed Virgin Media Inc.'s Long-term Issuer Default Rating at
'BB-' with a Stable Outlook and Short-term IDR at 'B', following
its announcement that it is seeking amendments to its senior
secured facilities.

At the same time, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that its
ratings and outlook on U.K.-based telecommunications provider
Virgin Media Inc. (VMI) and related entities (B+/Positive/--) are
unchanged by the company's announcement that it has requested
various amendments to the senior facilities agreement.


===============
X X X X X X X X
===============


* EC President Says European Stimulus Package Agreed
----------------------------------------------------
European Commission President Jose Manuel Durao Barroso in a press
statement on Friday, December 12, 2008, said there is an agreement
on a European Recovery Plan, following the Commission's proposals.

Mr. Barroso said the European Council has agreed to a joint effort
to put Europe firmly on the path to economic recovery.

"We have agreed on a shared approach, taking account the different
situations of Member States.  Acting together to recover together,
rejecting one-size-fits-all solutions, but with a common
determination and a real effort of coordination,"
Mr. Barroso said.

According to Mr. Barroso, there is agreement on the Commission's
proposal to create an economic stimulus large enough to have a
real impact - to boost demand and restore confidence.

Mr. Barroso noted this means injecting 1.5% of GDP into Europe's
economies.

"But spending must be 'smart' to make our economies more crisis-
resistant, and also more competitive in this globalized world,"
Mr. Barroso stated.

"Stimulus and sustainability must go hand in hand, I'm therefore
satisfied that the European Council has followed Commission's
proposals also in that it goes on Member States to return swiftly
within the limits for deficit and debt set up in the stability and
growth pact.  So we have the need for a short term stimulus, but
we have also our concerns regarding the medium and long term
dimension.  And indeed we have achieved a great consensus on
that," Mr. Barroso added.  "I believe this crisis is serious.  But
if we get the solutions right, Europe can emerge stronger."


* EC Adopts Temporary Measures to Help Member States Endure Crisis
------------------------------------------------------------------
The European Commission has adopted, under EC Treaty state aid
rules, a temporary framework providing Member States with
additional possibilities to tackle the effects of the credit
squeeze on the real economy.  The Framework forms part of the
measures announced by the Commission in its November 26 European
Economic Recovery Plan and was approved in record time following
consultation with Member States.  Due to the drying up of the
lending market, even healthy companies may not be able to get the
finance they need.  This may seriously endanger their business.
The new framework therefore introduces a number of temporary
measures to allow Member States to address the exceptional
difficulties of companies to obtain finance.  In particular,
Member States will be able to grant without notification of
individual cases subsidized loans, loan guarantees at a reduced
premium, risk capital for SMEs and direct aids of up to
EUR500,000.  All measures are limited until the end of 2010 and
subject to conditions.  Based on Member States' reports, the
Commission will evaluate whether the measures should be maintained
beyond 2010, depending on whether the crisis continues.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "We must fight the
crisis, not each other.  State aid must be targeted at allowing
companies, especially SMEs, to overcome financial problems arising
from the current credit squeeze without worsening the situation
for other companies, thereby aggravating the crisis. Together with
the existing possibilities to support smart investment in
sustainable growth, the new measures will give new opportunities
to Member States to bring the economy back on the right track."

The Framework will facilitate the tackling of the current
difficulties in the economy First, to ensure sufficient bank
lending to companies; second, to allow companies with liquidity
problems due to the crisis to benefit from temporary relief
through a limited grant; and third, to encourage companies to
continue investing into a sustainable future, including the
development of green products.

In order to meet these objectives, Member States may grant, under
certain conditions and until the end of 2010 e.g.:

    * a lump sum of aid up to EUR500,000 per company for the
      next two years, to relieve them from current difficulties

    * state guarantees for loans at a reduced premium

    * subsidized loans, in particular for the production of
      green products (meeting environmental protection standards
      early or going beyond such standards)

    * risk capital aid up to EUR2.5 million per SME per year
     (instead of the current EUR1.5 million) in cases where at
      least 30% (instead of the current 50%) of the investment
      cost comes from private investors.

The Commission expects the financial markets, and hence the
provision of lending to businesses, to get back to normal in the
foreseeable future.  Therefore, the new measures addressing the
exceptional circumstances in the financial markets are limited in
time and expire at the end of 2010.

Member States will have to notify schemes to the Commission that
fully comply with the above-mentioned types of aid.  As it has
done since the beginning of the crisis, the Commission will act
quickly provided Member States cooperate fully, provide adequate
information and follow the rules.  Once schemes are approved, aid
given to individual companies will not have to be notified.


* Delphi Chairman Says Detroit 3 Need Pseudo-Bankruptcy
-------------------------------------------------------
"General Motors Corp., Chrysler LLC, and Ford Motor Company -
need an out-of-court pseudo-bankruptcy that mimics the things
that might happen in a bankruptcy," said Steve Miller, Delphi
Corp. chairman, in an interview with Automotive News.

Mr. Miller, however, believed that bankruptcy and prepackaged
bankruptcy, which served as turnaround tools for Delphi, may not
be suitable to the Detroit 3.  "The Bankruptcy system isn't built
to handle anything as "big, complex and politically sensitive" as
a GM Bankruptcy," he related in the Automotive News interview.

"Prepackaged bankruptcies don't save time because all concessions
need to be made before going to the Court and the situation where
GM and Chrysler are in calls for urgency," Mr. Miller stressed.
Back in 1979, he recalled, it took three months of debate before
Congress signed the bill on loan guarantees on December 21, 1979,
and another six more months for Chrysler to get all stakeholder
concessions required by the law before an automaker could draw
its first guaranteed loan.

The article implied that a March 31 deadline for the Detroit 3 to
line-up concessions from stakeholders may prove to be overly
optimistic.

In 1979, there was Chrysler, one company who needed cash, this
time, there are three companies with different problems,
Mr. Miller pointed out in the interview.  Though a bailout is
about saving jobs, excessive focus on creating jobs would be bad
as in effect, "that would be creating a Job Banks again," he
added in the Automotive interview.

Mr. Miller also cited that an auto czar, instead of micromanaging
the companies, should establish guiding principles and leave the
rest to the management.  "They should just make the companies
healthy and let the market do the rest," he concluded in the
interview.

Mr. Miller was responsible for the 1979 rescue of Chrysler Corp.
and has rehabilitated several troubled companies, the article
noted.

To recall, the U.S. Senate has rejected the proposed US$14 billion
financial assistance for General Motors, Chrysler, and Ford
Motor, after the measure was passed by the House of
Representatives.  In light of the Senate's decision, the White
House, according to the Wall Street Journal, said on Friday that
it would consider letting the Big 3 access the US$700 billion
financial-rescue plan.  The government's US$700 billion Troubled
Asset Relief Program was approved in October and was intended for
financial institutions.

                   About Delphi Corp.

Based in Troy, Michigan, Delphi Corporation (PINKSHEETS: DPHIQ)
-- http://www.delphi.com/-- is the single supplier of vehicle
electronics, transportation components, integrated systems and
modules, and other electronic technology.  The company's
technology and products are present in more than 75 million
vehicles on the road worldwide.  Delphi has regional headquarters
in Japan, Brazil and France.

The company filed for Chapter 11 protection on Oct. 8, 2005
(Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No. 05-44481).  John Wm. Butler Jr.,
Esq., John K. Lyons, Esq., and Ron E. Meisler, Esq., at Skadden,
Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, represent the Debtors in their
restructuring efforts.  Robert J. Rosenberg, Esq., Mitchell A.
Seider, Esq., and Mark A. Broude, Esq., at Latham & Watkins LLP,
represent the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  As of
June 30, 2008, the Debtors' balance sheet showed US$9,162,000,000
in total assets and US$23,742,000,000 in total debts.

The Court approved Delphi's First Amended Joint Disclosure
Statement and related solicitation procedures for the solicitation
of votes on the First Amended Plan on Dec. 20, 2007.  The Court
confirmed the Debtors' First Amended Plan on Jan. 25, 2008.  The
Plan has not been consummated after a group led by Appaloosa
Management, L.P., backed out from their proposal to provide
USUS$2,550,000,000 in equity financing to Delphi.
(Delphi Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 153; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)


* Moody's Says Likely Scenario Is Gov't Support for Automakers
--------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Government will likely provide immediate stopgap
financing to bridge the major American auto companies until a more
complete agreement can be reached early in 2009, says Moody's
Investors Service in a new report that outlines the three mostly
likely bailout and bankruptcy scenarios for government help to
Ford, GM and Chrysler.

"We think it's most likely that a prepackaged bankruptcy filing
coupled with government financial assistance will be needed to
restructure the Big Three," said Moody's Senior Vice President
Bruce Clark, a co-author of the report.  "The government will also
probably offer support by providing or guaranteeing debtor-in-
possession or DIP financing, and bondholder losses would probably
be less than 75% in this scenario."

In the wake of the domestic auto manufacturing companies' request
for urgent financial assistance from the federal government, the
Moody's report describes three bailout and bankruptcy scenarios
for Detroit, assesses the probabilities of these scenarios, and
examines the extent of likely losses in each of the scenarios for
auto manufacturer debt holders.  It then assesses the broader
implications of the three scenarios, across the larger economy
generally and specifically on 10 important financial and
industrial sectors.

These include auto-part manufacturers, captive finance companies,
car rental companies, banks, auto dealers, steel, chemicals,
rental car fleet securitizations, state and local governments,
dealer floorplan securitizations, auto loan/lease securitizations,
and rental car fleet securitizations.

"A prepackaged bankruptcy might be the best approach to current
problems, but achieving timely agreement from a broad range of
creditors would be highly difficult, especially given the critical
funding status of GM and Chrysler," said Mr. Clark.

While the analyst and his Moody's colleagues give a prepackaged
bankruptcy filing coupled with government financial assistance a
70% likelihood of coming to pass, they assign a 25% probability of
a government bailout without a near-term automaker bankruptcy.

"Under this less-likely scenario, a comprehensive bailout package
is agreed to that enables the automakers to restructure without
any bankruptcy filings during 2009.  The degree of economic
disruption and direct financial loss for investors would be
contained, at least in the short term," said Mr. Clark.
"Bondholder losses would be the least in this scenario, although
there is a risk that such a reorganization would be inadequate,
and that at least one automaker might file for bankruptcy beyond
2009."

Given only a 5% likelihood, Moody's also considers the "freefall
bankruptcy" scenario without a prepackage plan and without
government involvement.  This would involve the most significant
disruption to the economy, including potential bankruptcies in
associated industries such as auto parts suppliers and auto
dealers.

"The negative consumer sentiment and erosion of franchise value
would make the reorganization process more complex for the
automakers and a Chapter 7 liquidation of at least one of the
automakers possible," said Mr. Clark.  "Auto bondholder losses
could be in the 75-100% range in this scenario."

The report, "U.S. Automakers: Credit Implications of Three
Scenarios Have Broad Reach," is available at:

                  http://www/moodys.com/


* BOOK REVIEW: Bankruptcy Investing: How to Profit from Dist. Cos.
------------------------------------------------------------------
Author:     Ben Branch and Hugh Ray
Publisher:  Beard Books
Paperback:  344 pages
List Price: $39.95

Order your personal copy at
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1587981211/internetbankrupt

The book Bankruptcy Investing: How to Profit from Distressed
Companies, is written by Ben Branch and Hugh Ray.

Corporate bankruptcies are at an all-time high, and this trend is
likely to continue. Bankruptcy Investing introduces investors to
the risky but lucrative opportunities to invest in the securities
of troubled companies.

Every area of this exciting field is described in complete detail.
Real-world examples illustrate the explanations. Companies in
distress may go through an informal or formal workout of problems,
or they may enter Chapter 11 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

The investment implications for the securities of firms in each of
these stages are considered in full. Everything the investor needs
to know is contained in this book. The authors show why it can be
smart to invest in troubled companies.

Whether you are a savvy investor or experienced fund manager (or
aspire to be one), Bankruptcy Investing introduces you to the
risky but lucrative opportunities for investing in the securities
of troubled companies.

This timely new book describes in detail the rules of the game and
how to apply them to pick the winners.

The authors, both experts in the legal and financial aspects of
bankruptcy investing, explain everything you need to know about
investing in distressed companies, including estimating bankruptcy
values, how to use timing to your advantage, quantitative
techniques to minimize risks, evaluating available data,
characteristics of various types of short-term and long-term debt
instruments, investment strategies, and sources of additional
information.

You'll fully understand all the implications of investing in the
securities of firms in all stages of financial distress--from
informal or formal workouts to Chapter 11 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy-
-as well as investing in both debt and equity securities.

Real-world examples illustrate how you can profit from investing
in troubled companies and what risks are incurred. An extensive
glossary defines legal, economic and financial terms.

Bankruptcy Investing translates the often-confusing lexicon of
bankruptcy into a profitable investment program that you can
implement immediately.

You too will discover an exciting way to find new investment
winners.

Two financial experts guide you through the risky but lucrative
investment opportunities available in troubled companies.

Whether your interests are informal or formal workouts, Chapter 11
or Chapter 7 bankruptcies, debt or equity securities, this book
will explain everything you need to know about investing in
distressed corporations.

Topics include estimating bankruptcy values, how to use timing to
your advantage, quantitative techniques to minimize risk,
evaluating available data, the characteristics of various types of
short-term and long-term debt instruments, and investment
strategies.

                            *********

Monday's edition of the TCR delivers a list of indicative prices
for bond issues that reportedly trade well below par.  Prices are
obtained by TCR editors from a variety of outside sources during
the prior week we think are reliable.  Those sources may not,
however, be complete or accurate.  The Monday Bond Pricing table
is compiled on the Friday prior to publication.  Prices reported
are not intended to reflect actual trades.  Prices for actual
trades are probably different.  Our objective is to share
information, not make markets in publicly traded securities.
Nothing in the TCR constitutes an offer or solicitation to buy or
sell any security of any kind.  It is likely that some entity
affiliated with a TCR editor holds some position in the issuers'
public debt and equity securities about which we report.

Each Tuesday edition of the TCR contains a list of companies with
insolvent balance sheets whose shares trade higher than US$3 per
share in public markets.  At first glance, this list may look like
the definitive compilation of stocks that are ideal to sell short.
Don't be fooled.  Assets, for example, reported at historical cost
net of depreciation may understate the true value of a firm's
assets.  A company may establish reserves on its balance sheet for
liabilities that may never materialize.  The prices at which
equity securities trade in public market are determined by more
than a balance sheet solvency test.

A list of Meetings, Conferences and Seminars appears in each
Thursday's edition of the TCR. Submissions about insolvency-
related conferences are encouraged.  Send announcements to
conferences@bankrupt.com

Each Friday's edition of the TCR includes a review about a book of
interest to troubled company professionals.  All titles are
available at your local bookstore or through Amazon.com.  Go to
http://www.bankrupt.com/booksto order any title today.

                            *********


S U B S C R I P T I O N   I N F O R M A T I O N

Troubled Company Reporter -- Europe is a daily newsletter co-
published by Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., Fairless
Hills, Pennsylvania, USA, and Beard Group, Inc., Frederick,
Maryland USA.  Pius Xerxes V. Tovilla, Valerie C. Udtuhan, Marites
O. Claro, Rousel Elaine C. Tumanda, Joy A. Agravante, Marie
Therese V. Profetana and Peter A. Chapman, Editors.

Copyright 2008.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2754.

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
publication in any form (including e-mail forwarding, electronic
re-mailing and photocopying) is strictly prohibited without prior
written permission of the publishers.

Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to
be reliable, but is not guaranteed.

The TCR Europe subscription rate is US$625 per half-year,
delivered via e-mail.  Additional e-mail subscriptions for members
of the same firm for the term of the initial subscription or
balance thereof are US$25 each. For subscription information,
contact Christopher Beard at 240/629-3300.


                 * * * End of Transmission * * *