May 30, 2012 / 7:48 PM / in 5 years

TEXT-S&P rates Whirlpool notes 'BBB-'

May 30 - Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said today it assigned its
preliminary 'BBB-' senior unsecured debt rating and preliminary 'BB+'
subordinated debt rating to Benton Harbor, Mich.-based Whirlpool Corp.'s 
      Rule 415 universal shelf registration. In addition, we assigned a 'BBB-'
rating to the company's proposed issuance of $300 million senior unsecured notes
due 2022. We expect net proceeds from the debt issue to refinance existing
indebtedness. As a result, we estimate leverage, as measured by the ratio of
total adjusted debt to EBITDA, to remain unchanged following the offering. For
the 12 months ended March 31, 2012, we estimate 	
adjusted leverage was about 2.8x.  	
	
The ratings on Whirlpool Corp. reflect our opinion that the company has a
"satisfactory" business risk profile and an "intermediate" financial risk
profile. Key credit factors considered in our assessment of Whirlpool's 	
business risk include the company's strong market position as the largest 	
major appliance manufacturer in the world, supported by its portfolio of 	
well-recognized brand names, focused research and development efforts, and 	
geographic diversity. We also factored into our business risk assessment our 	
view of the company's intense competition from several large, well-capitalized 	
international companies, participation in a cyclical industry, and exposure to 	
fluctuating raw material costs. The company's intermediate financial risk 	
profile is supported by Whirlpool's liquidity that we forecast should remain 	
strong despite meaningful cash requirements over the next few years, and 	
credit measures that are close to indicative ratio ranges for an intermediate 	
financial risk profile, which include leverage of 2x-3x and FFO to debt of 	
30%-45%.	
	
For the complete rating analysis, please refer to our research report on 	
Whirlpool Corp., published March 30, 2012 on RatingsDirect. 	
	
Related Criteria And Research	
     -- Methodology And Assumptions: Liquidity Descriptors For Global 	
Corporate Issuers, Sept. 28, 2011	
     -- Business Risk/Financial Risk Matrix Expanded, May 27, 2009	
     -- Key Credit Factors: Business And Financial Risks In The Branded 	
Consumer Products Industry, Sept. 10, 2008	
     -- 2008 Corporate Criteria: Rating Each Issue, April 15, 2008	
	
RATINGS LIST	
Whirlpool Corp.	
 Corporate credit rating                   BBB-/Stable/A-3	
	
RATINGS ASSIGNED	
Whirlpool Corp.	
 Senior unsecured	
  $300 mil. notes due 2022                 BBB-	
  Rule 415 universal shelf registration    BBB-(prelim)	
 Subordinated	
  Rule 415 universal shelf registration    BB+(prelim)

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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