U.S. judge denies requests in Argentina debt cases
NEW YORK |
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Monday denied requests by a class of mostly individual bondholders to suspend or disapprove of Argentina's $20 billion debt swap.
An order by U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa in New York went further than the position he took following oral arguments on April 15, when he reserved decision on motions by lawyers for perhaps tens of thousands of bondholders accounting for several billion dollars in debt owed by Argentina.
"The proposal in the motions before the court is that the court should hold up the exchange offer, and perhaps ultimately disapprove the exchange offer, with respect to the limited number of bondholders in the class actions," Griesa wrote.
"But this would involve the court in actions which could mean the class members are deprived of whatever opportunity the exchange offer affords with no assurances that so-called 'improved' offer would ever be made."
He said the order applies to motions in 10 class actions.
On April 15, Argentina offered to swap up to $20 billion in defaulted debt in a bid to return to global credit markets, raising expectations for high acceptance, even though some investors hoped for more generous terms.
In Buenos Aires, Argentine Finance Secretary Hernan Lorenzino welcomed Griesa's latest ruling and said the government was only waiting for final approval by European financial regulators to formally launch the swap.
He said officials were also studying the possibility of an eventual swap of Boden 12 bonds to extend maturities.
(Reporting by Grant McCool and Jorge Otaola in Buenos Aires; editing by Carol Bishopric)
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