SYDNEY, Feb 15 (Reuters) - Standard & Poor's said on Monday it has removed the credit watch negative linked to Rio Tinto's ratings following the global miner's flexible dividend policy announcement.
S&P affirmed Rio Tinto's rating of A-minus but kept a negative outlook due to weakness in commodities.
The ratings agency said it could downgrade the miner in the next 18 months. It highlighted risks should the Chinese economy experience a worse-than-anticipated slowdown, leading to prolonged weaker demand for iron ore, aluminum, and copper. (Reporting by Cecile Lefort; Editing by Paul Tait)