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Greece welcomes test return to bond markets
Last Updated: 2018-02-09 11:33 | Xinhua
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Greece on Thursday welcomed a successful new test return to capital markets with the issuance of a 7-year state bond at 3.5 percent yield.

"Greece's exit to markets today is a proof that not only can we raise new money, but we are also in a position to do it under not very positive circumstances," said Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos.

Despite this week's turmoil in international markets, which delayed the country's exit for a few days, Greece drew offers exceeding expectations.

Investors made bids amounting to 6.5 billion euros (8 billion U.S. dollars) for the bond issue, greatly oversubscribing the Greek Finance Ministry's target of 3 billion euros, Greek national news agency AMNA reported.

The debt-ridden country is expected to fully return to the markets in 2018 when the current third bailout program ends.

In July 2017, Athens made its first test return to markets since 2014 and raised 3 billion euros selling five-year state bonds at a 4.625 percent interest rate.

Last November, Greece also completed a state bond swap program worth 25.47 billion euros.

Thursday's transaction is one of the three state bond issues scheduled by the Greek government until the completion of the current bailout program in August.

The aim of these issues is to restore the country's stable access to capital markets, to facilitate the return to financing normality after completion of the program as well as the building of a capital buffer.

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