On the risk to the French "triple-A":
"But ze debts of ze Brits
Are so deep in ze sh£ts,
For comparison's sake, if I may."
French central bank head Christian Noyer may have sparked a war of words with Britain. Responding to S&P's putting his nation on negative credit watch, with the possible loss of its prestigious AAA rating, Mr. Noyer commented:
"A downgrade doesn't seem justified to me when you look at the economic fundamentals, or else a downgrade should come first for the U.K., which has a greater deficit, as much debt, more inflation, and less growth than us, and collapsing credit."Trying to keep a stiff upper lip, a spokesman for Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative government noted the credibility of the UK's deficit reduction plan. In truth, the British have nothing to gain by rising to Mr. Noyer's bait, since their public deficit, at 9.4% of GDP, is far above France's 5.8%.