Pupils handed B grades by their schools were most likely to have their results downgraded during the standardisation process, Ofqual analysis shows.

Grades this year were issued by schools and then standardised by exam boards, which downgraded 39.1 per cent of grades.

Data published by the exams regulator today shows that the proportion of B grades issued fell by 11.1 percentage points during moderation, while the proportion of A grades issued was reduced by 10.1 percentage points and C grades were reduced by 9 percentage points.

This is compared to a reduction in the proportion of A* grades of just 5 percentage points, and reductions of 4.1 and 1.5 percentage points for D and E grades respectively.

According to Ofqual 35.6 per cent of the 718,276 grades were adjusted down by one grade, 3.3 per cent were adjusted down by two grades and 0.2 per cent were adjusted down by three grades.

While 58.7 per cent of pupils grades were unadjusted, Ofqual also revealed 2.2 per cent of pupils had grades moved up by one grade while less than 0.1 per cent of pupils’ grades were boosted by two or three grades.