EURO GOVT-Bunds rise as ECB easing expectations persist

LONDON Thu May 16, 2013 2:08am EDT

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LONDON May 16 (Reuters) - German Bund futures edged up on Thursday before final euro zone inflation data for April which is expected to reinforce expectations the European Central Bank will ease policy further.

Lower-rated euro zone debt markets could find renewed support in the near future after Italy sold 6 billion euros worth of 30-year bonds via a syndicated deal which drew strong demand on Wednesday.

However, traders say gains for peripheral bonds might not occur right away as the market is still trying to digest the recent supply, which includes syndicated deals from Spain and Portugal earlier this month.

"There might be a little indigestion so it might take a little while (until peripheral debt recovers)," one trader said.

Bund futures were 20 ticks higher at 144.84. A preliminary estimate showed inflation in April was 1.2 percent year-on-year. The data follows weak euro zone growth figures on Wednesday, which showed the region's economy contracted by 0.2 percent in the first quarter. (Reporting by Marius Zaharia/editing by Chris Pizzey, London MPG Desk, +44 (0)207 542-4441)

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