US Treasury default swaps jump to new record-Markit

NEW YORK Wed Feb 18, 2009 11:20am EST

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NEW YORK Feb 18 (Reuters) - The cost to insure U.S. Treasury debt with credit default swaps jumped to a record high on Wednesday as President Barack Obama unveiled another round of spending designed to stem home foreclosures.

Credit default swaps on U.S. government debt widened 8.5 basis points to 90 basis points, or $90,000 per year for five years to insure $10 million in debt, according to Markit. The swaps had traded at less than 10 basis points a year ago.

President Barack Obama on Wednesday pledged up to $275 billion to help stem a wave of home foreclosures that sparked the U.S. financial meltdown. For details, see [ID:nN17400254]

Swaps protecting the sovereign debt of Germany also rose 12 basis points to 85 basis points on Wednesday, while swaps on Britain fell 4.5 basis points to 164.5 basis points, Markit data shows.

(Reporting by Karen Brettell; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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