NEW YORK - Standard & Poor's has revised its outlook on Providian Financial Corp. and its units Providian National Bank and Providian Capital 1 to "negative" from "stable," but affirmed its ratings on the company's debt.

Providian Financial's senior debt is rated BB-plus, and its subordinated debt is rated BB-minus. Providian National Bank senior unsecured debt ratings are BBB-minus/A3, and its subordinated debt ratings are BB-plus/B.

S&P said the outlook revision was because of "the uncertain impact on the company's business created by its recent agreement with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the San Francisco District Attorney's office to reimburse customers for fees and interest costs arising from alleged unfair and misleading marketing practices." S&P said its decision to affirm its ratings on Providian reflected the San Francisco credit card company's "strong profitability and solid capitalization."

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