I'm going to have a bit of a rant today - it seems the rating agencies are largely the cause of this current meltdown we're in globally. If they did their jobs properly, banks and investors would have been able to make more informed decisions on the kinds of derivative products that were being traded. Particularly the toxic sub-prime mortgage assets that were being securitized and traded between banks.
I am disappointed that the regulators have not slapped the rating agencies more harshly. While the banks are not escaping blame, the advisors that directly influence the decision-makers should also be held accountable for their role in the current crisis.