DUBLIN, April 10 (Reuters) - Ireland sold 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) of 10-year debt as planned on Thursday, bettering the record low yields achieved last month at its first regular auction in four years.
Dublin is already fully funded for 2014 and is aiming to raise 8 billion euros this year to complete pre-funding for 2015, over 70 percent of which it has already collected from the two auctions and a 10-year issue in January.
The speedy progress towards that target continued on Thursday when 1 billion euros of the 10-year bond was sold at a yield of 2.917, lower than last month’s 2.967 percent, the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) said on its website.
The auction received 2.8 times more bids than needed to complete the auction.
March’s debt sale, also of the bond maturing in 2024, was the first auction since September 2010, before Ireland was locked out of bond markets and hurtled towards a European Union/International Monetary Fund bailout after a property crash led to a deep recession and austerity.
The NTMA will hold its next bond auction on May 8.
Ireland has been raising debt periodically for over two years through debt swaps and syndicated issues, a strategy that has been copied by Portugal which hopes to follow Ireland out of its bailout next month.
Twice bailed-out Greece, at risk of crashing out of the euro zone just two years ago, will issue its first sovereign bond in almost four years on Thursday having attracted more than 11 billion euros of investor interest. ($1 = 0.7234 Euros) (Reporting by Padraic Halpin Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)