ECONOMY

Greek yields edge up as lenders scrutinise reform pledge

Greek bond yields edged up on Monday as investors cautiously waited to see whether Athens would come up with a list of reforms sufficient to unlock much-needed bailout cash.

While Greece sounded an upbeat tone on talks through the weekend, creditors said the list submitted by Athens on Friday was more a collection of ideas that something that could be presented to the Eurogroup.

Sources told Reuters it could take several more days before a proper list of measures was ready, while the country is set to run out of cash on April 20.

Ratings agency Fitch on Friday cut Greece’s credit rating ‘CCC’ from ‘B’ citing uncertainty over funding, lack of market access and tight liquidity.

“It does not look like a smooth affair,» said Commerzbank strategist David Schnautz, who nevertheless thought an eleventh hour deal would still be struck.

“The situation may well get worse before it eventually improves, leaving the risk of an accident on the table.”

Ten-year Greek yields rose 6 basis points to 11.10 percent, while shorter-dated yields were up some 43 bps at 20.93 percent.

Yields on other low-rated bonds also edged up. Portuguese yields were up 3 bps at 1.80 percent, while Italy and Spain’s rose 1 bp to 1.35 and 1.33 percent respectively.

Officials expect Athens to submit a more detailed list on Monday. The measures are meant to raise 3 billion euros and Greece has already excluded «recessionary measures» such as wage and pension cuts.

“Things will be moving into a decisive phase this week … Athens could well run out of money after Easter,» said DZ Bank in a note.

At the auctions, Italy will offer up to 7.5 billion euros of fixed-rate bonds (BTPs) and floating rate bonds linked to 6-month Euribor (CCTEUs) at its regular end-month auction on Monday.

Spanish consumer prices fell 0.7 percent year-on-year, preliminary data for March showed on Monday, slightly better than the 0.9 percent fall predicted in a Reuters poll.

The euro zone’s largest economy Germany will report at 1200GMT, a strong indication of what bloc wide data due on Tuesday will bring.

“We forecast HICP to creep higher for both countries this month, primarily on the back of rising fuel prices,» said RBC in a note, adding that a strong German reading should put euro zone inflation back into positive territory tomorrow.

German 10-year yields opened 1 bp lower at 0.19 percent.

[Reuters]