April 13, 2010
Greece’s auction of Treasury bills drew stronger demand than at a previous sale as yields more than doubled in the first offering of debt since the nation won a pledge of aid from the European Union.
The government sold 780 million euros ($1.06 billion) of 26-week bills at a yield of 4.55 percent, attracting bids for 7.67 times the securities offered, the nation’s Public Debt Management Agency said today in Athens. Greece also offered 780 million euros of 52-week securities at a yield of 4.85 percent, with a bid-to-cover ratio of 6.54 times. In January, the 52-week bills were sold to yield 2.2 percent.
Euro-region finance ministers and the International Monetary Fund offered the country as much as 45 billion euros in loans two days ago. Greek two-year notes rose for a third day earlier today and the euro gained against the dollar as the lifeline boosted confidence the government will avoid a default.
“The result confirms that the package which was put in place on Sunday has enabled Greece to fund itself in the near- term,” said David Owen, chief European financial economist at Jefferies International Ltd. in London. “But the longer-term fundamental issues in terms of where we go from here haven’t changed. Greece has to put its finances in order against the backdrop of an economy that currently is shrinking.”