More lucrative than Microsoft?

Credit Rating agencies are even more profitable than Microsoft, thanks to a SEC-sanctioned de facto duopoly. More, they ain’t even responsible for their mistakes
clipped from online.barrons.com
“nationally recognized statistical rating organization(s).
the two top dogs preside over what the Justice Department terms a partner monopoly
This duopoly has proven inordinately profitable, which perhaps explains why Warren Buffett is Moody’s top shareholder, with a nearly 19% stake. S&P’s results are buried in the financials of its publisher parent, McGraw Hill (MHP), but pure-play Moody‘s (MCO) earns some of the fattest margins in the S&P 500, with pretax income last year of $1.1 billion on a mere $2 billion in revenue. Even monopolists like Microsoft would kill for Moody’s operating margins, typically 50% or more.
the agencies have long escaped any legal liability for issuing errant ratings by asserting that their actions constitute free speech protected by the First Amendment. In essence, they portray their ratings as nothing more than editorial opinion.
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