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Spain sells 5.5 bln euros in Treasury bills

Source: Reuters - Tue 18th Jan 2011

Spain's Treasury issued 5.5 billion euros ($7.34 billion) of 12- and 18-month T-bills on Tuesday, in the middle of the targeted range and with both issues at a lower yield than the previous auction in December.

The debt sale was the first time this year the Treasury has taken its short-term paper to the markets. An auction of 5-year bonds Jan. 13 went better than expected, helping boost sentiment toward the euro zone's peripheral economies.

The 12-month bill sold 4.5 billion euros at an average yield of 2.947 percent, compared to 3.449 percent in December's auction and at a bid-to-cover ratio of 2.2.

The 18-month bill sold 1.0 billion euros at an average yield of 3.367 percent, compared to 3.721 percent last month, and was 4.1 times subscribed.

The premium investors demand to hold Spanish 10-year bonos over German Bunds was at 239 basis points after the auction, down 2 bps from the settlement on Monday.

On Monday Spain scrapped plans for a long-term debt auction due Thursday and instead sold 6 billion euros of 10-year bonds to a syndicate of banks, at a spread of 225 basis points over mid-swaps, or 256.4 points over the German 10-yr bund.

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