LISBON, April 30 Portugal Telecom
placed one billion euros in seven-year bonds on Tuesday in the
largest debt issue by a Portuguese company since the country's
2011 bailout, taking advantage of improving investor sentiment
towards the euro zone periphery.
The coupon on the issue was set at 4.625 percent, down from
the initial guidance of 4.875 percent, and well below the 5.875
percent on PT's previous 5.5-year bond issue in October 2012.
"This transaction further enhances PT's financial
flexibility by extending debt maturities, which, in the current
environment, substantially reduces financial risks," the company
said in a statement.
Still, PT's shares fell 0.9 percent on Tuesday to 3.961
euros, underperforming the broader market in Lisbon that
finished 0.2 percent lower.
Large Portuguese companies began to return to the corporate
bond market in September, and in January the country made its
first sovereign bond issue since the bailout, which the
government hopes will allow cheaper funds to trickle down to the
Portugal is in its worst recession since the 1970s, but the
government expects meagre growth to return next year when the
country is due to exit its bailout programme. Government debt
yields are now at levels last seen in 2010, well before the
bailout, but still higher than Spain's or Ireland's.
(Reporting by Filipe Alves and Andrei Khalip; Editing by James