Greece accepts additional bids for 3-month T-bills

ATHENS Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:39am EDT

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ATHENS Aug 16 (Reuters) - Greece on Thursday sold an additional 937.5 million euros ($1.15 billion) of three-month T-bills, bringing total proceeds from Tuesday's auction to repay a maturing government bond to 5.0 billion euros, the country's debt agency (PDMA) said.

PDMA has stepped up its T-bill issuance to meet a 3.2 billion euro government bond redemption on August 20 and roll over 1.6 billion of three-month paper maturing on August 17. The maturing bond is held by the European Central Bank.

Starved of funding options, Athens increased the size of its monthly auction after the ECB agreed to raise the ceiling on the amount of T-bills the Bank of Greece can accept as collateral in exchange for emergency loans.

The government thus gained access to up to an extra 4 billion euros of funds. Greek banks taking up the bulk of T-bill issues can park the paper at the local central bank to tap its emergency liquidity assistance (ELA) window.

On Tuesday, the three-month T-bills were priced to yield 4.43 percent, up from 4.28 percent in a previous July 17 sale. The auction's bid-cover ratio came to 1.36 versus 2.12 previously.

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