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Spanish government says had not expected S&P downgrade

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's Secretary of State for the Economy Fernando Jimenez Latorre said on Thursday that the Spanish government had not expected a sovereign debt downgrade by ratings agency Standard & Poor's.

"We did not expect the downgrade," Fernando Jimenez Latorre said during a press conference.

Latorre said he hoped the rating agency would reconsider its position on Spanish debt as the country meets its fiscal consolidations targets.

Standard & Poor's on Wednesday cut Spain's sovereign credit rating to BBB-minus, one notch above junk territory, citing a deepening economic recession that is limiting the government's policy options to arrest the slide.

(Reporting by Rodrigo de Miguel; writing by Jesús Aguado; editing by Paul Day)

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