Italy to sell new retail bond in May to fund coronavirus crisis spending

MILAN, April 16 (Reuters) - Italy will offer small savers a new inflation-linked bond next month to raise funds to help the economy cope with the coronavirus crisis, the Treasury said in a statement on Thursday.

Italy’s budget deficit will be near 10% of gross domestic product this year, a senior government official told Reuters, as Rome increases borrowing to counter the deep recession which the virus is expected to have caused.

The new “BTP Italia” bond, which pays a coupon tied to the domestic inflation rate, will have a maturity ranging from four to eight years.

Retail investors will be able to buy the bond from May 18 to May 20, while the offer reserved for institutional investors will take place on May 21.

Italy introduced the BTP Italia bonds at the height of the euro zone crisis to tap large private wealth at home in the face of scant foreign demand for its debt. (Reporting by Elvira Pollina; editing by Valentina Za)