German bonds rose at Friday’s open, supported by demand for low-risk assets as investors fretted over Greece’s debt problems, with the prospect of low growth in Europe and the United States adding to concerns.
Greece will vote to approve the country’s 2013 budget on Sunday, the next big step towards unlocking access to urgently needed international aid following Wednesday’s tight vote in favour of a 13.5 billion euro austerity package.
However, on Thursday the German finance minister said next week may still be too early to make a decision on granting Greece further aid.
“The latest Greece delay gave us a kick yesterday… and the U.S. fiscal situation is perhaps the bigger picture story – I don’t see any reason why we should be selling off from here today,» a trader said.
Bund futures rose 7 ticks to 143.05, building on gains of more than a full point made since last Friday’s close.
The bid has been fuelled in part by the re-election of Barack Obama as U.S. President and the risk that politicians will be unable to negotiate a way around $600 billion in spending cuts and tax hikes which could extinguish growth to the world’s largest economy.