Aug 21 - In a report published Aug. 20, 2012, titled "North American Credit Conditions Are Clouded By Heightened Global Uncertainty," Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said it believes the chance of another recession in the U.S. has risen, while the odds of a true double-dip downturn in the eurozone economy remain high. "We do not believe the U.S. and European economies will improve substantially in the next year, even under our base-case economic scenarios. With the global economy weakening amid considerable downside risks, we anticipate more challenging credit conditions ahead," said Standard & Poor's senior managing director John Bilardello. At the same time, the possible contagion from the European debt crisis, the potential so-called "fiscal cliff" (the collection of fiscal-tightening events set to occur at the end of this year and the beginning of 2013 without agreements to avert them), and the risk of a hard landing for China's economy have added greater uncertainty to U.S. economic prospects in upcoming months. In Canada, the current mix of international and domestic macroeconomic conditions could bring about a rising level of unemployment and further constrain income growth for Canadian workers. These developments may potentially impair consumers' debt servicing capacity and amplify Canada's vulnerability to a housing market correction at some point in the future. However, our baseline assumption is that Canada's housing market is positioned for a soft landing. The report is available to subscribers of RatingsDirect on the Global Credit Portal at www.globalcreditportal.com. If you are not a RatingsDirect subscriber, you may purchase a copy of the report by calling (1) 212-438-7280 or sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ratings information can also be found on Standard & Poor's public Web site by using the Ratings search box located in the left column at www.standardandpoors.com.