T-bill issue lands negative rate again


Greece borrowed 812.5 million euros at a negative interest rate for the third time in the last couple of months on Wednesday, though this was the first time for six-month Treasury bills, following two instances concerning three-month T-bills. This shows that demand for Greek debt remains strong despite the fact that the international bond rally ran out of steam in November.

The 26-week T-bill issue achieved a rate of minus 0.02 percent yesterday, against a zero interest rate in a similar auction at the end of October. The issue was oversubscribed 2.11 times as bids added up to 1.32 billion euros for the 625-million-euro issue.

The negative yield vindicates the Public Debt Management Agency’s decision to continue with T-bill issues, even if it does want to gradually reduce its exposure to this form of debt due to fears of a deterioration in the international environment that might lead to a sell-off by foreign investors who hold a large share of the bills.

Kathimerini understands the agency will continue to issue T-bills of such maturities in 2020 too, given that demand remains strong and foreign investors are lining up at every auction.