BUSINESS

Happy end in sight for Hercules negotiations

EIRINI CHRYSOLORA

TAGS: Finance, Economy

The negotiations concerning the provision of additional guarantees by the Greek state so as to have the senior notes issued by banks in the context of the Hercules asset protection scheme considered risk-free are heading toward a positive conclusion, sources have told Kathimerini.

The response by the European Central Bank’s Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) is expected by the end of the month and sources say the bank watchdog will not insist on its original position pressing for the use of resources from the country’s cash buffer for the 12 billion euros of guarantees the Greek state will offer.

According to sources, the SSM had proposed as an alternative that Greek government bonds be provided as collateral, on the condition they had a nominal value equal to 120 percent of the value of the guarantee and a maturity period equal to the bonds the banks issue.

Although there will be an alternative solution, the sources say, this will not affect the deficit or the national debt and will not be based on a condition for additional collateral, which drew a strong government reaction. Athens did not want the cash buffer reduced for that reason, as that would have a negative impact on the cost of Greece’s borrowing.

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