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Greece raises 1.3bn euros in debt sale

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ATHENS, Dec 18 AFP

December 18 2012, 10:18PM

Greece has raised 1.3 billion euros ($A1.64 billion) in a three-month treasury bill auction with demand to spare, returning to short-term debt sales after completing an EU-funded debt buy-back last week.

"During the auction of 1.0 billion euros of 13-week treasury bills conducted today, the total bids reached 1.73 billion and the amount finally accepted was 1.3 billion," the state debt management agency said in a statement on Tuesday.

The sale offered a yield of 4.11 per cent to lenders.

In the last three-month auction in November, the agency had raised 1.3 billion euros at an interest rate of 4.20 per cent.

Greece last week attracted offers of 31.9 billion euros in a bond buy-back designed to alleviate its enormous sovereign debt by some 20 billion euros.

The scheme was a condition for the unblocking of pending EU-IMF loans, which had been held back since June owing to reform delays and a protracted electoral campaign in Greece that raised doubts about the future of its fiscal overhaul.

Because of the delay in receiving the EU-IMF funds, Greece had been forced to make emergency one-month debt auctions in November and earlier this month.

Following the approval of European leaders last week, Greece is to receive 34.3 billion euros in scheduled bailout aid in December, and another 14.8 billion euros in the first quarter of next year.

The first seven billion was disbursed on Monday and another 27.3 billion is expected by Wednesday, a Greek official said on Tuesday.