Business Irish

Friday 24 November 2017

Greek crisis puts return to bond markets in doubt

In Spain, Mr Rajoy warned his country could be locked out of international markets.

The banking crisis, combined with dramatically high unemployment and high government debt, has sapped investor confidence in Spain in recent weeks.

"Right now, there is a serious risk that (investors) will not lend us money or they will do so at an astronomical rate," he said.

Investors are getting increasingly concerned about whether the Spanish government can push through its deficit-reduction plan. Interest rates, or yields, on 10-year Spanish bonds traded on the secondary market hit 6.32pc in afternoon trading -- taking them closer to the levels that prompted bailouts for Greece, Portugal and Ireland.

At one stage, the difference between the interest rates demanded by investors for Spanish and German 10-year bonds shot past the 500 basis point level to hit its highest point since the euro was introduced in 1999.

"The spread has risen a great deal, which means it's very difficult to finance oneself and to do so at a reasonable price," Mr Rajoy said.

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