Moody's hits Walgreens with downgrade amid healthcare bet

Credit ratings agency Moody's cut Walgreens Boots Alliance's credit rating to junk as the pharmacy store chain looks to expand its retail care offerings, Bloomberg reported Dec. 11.

In September, Walgreens CEO Rosalind Brewer stepped down from her role, and in November announced plans to lay off 5% of its corporate staff as it looks to trim costs and reign in debt. New CEO Tim Wentworth will lead the company as it looks to cut $1 billion in total costs. 

The company had looked to push into healthcare services and compete with rival CVS through an expansion of its healthcare services. However, as part of the cost-cutting strategy, the company has planned to close 60 of its VillageMD primary care sites. 

"We are disappointed by Moody's decision today and the limited timeframe given to demonstrate the results of our deleveraging efforts and planned actions to improve underlying business performance," Walgreens said in a statement.

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