Greek Credit Swaps Surge; 91% Chance of Default

by Zagros on September 8, 2020

Credit-default swaps on Greek government debt surged to a record, signaling a 91 percent chance the nation will fail to meet debt commitments, after its economy shrank more than previously reported.

Five-year contracts on the country’s sovereign bonds jumped 196 basis points to 3,001 basis points, at 3:45 p.m. in London, according to CMA, which is owned by CME Group Inc. and compiles prices quoted by dealers in the privately negotiated market.

Gross domestic product shrank 7.3 percent from a year earlier after declining 8.1 percent on an annual basis in the first quarter, the Hellenic Statistical Authority said. Greece’s financial situation is “on a knife’s edge,” German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble told lawmakers last night, according to parliament’s HIB bulletin.

“It’s a combination of Greece continuing to disappoint and probably a growing realization among politicians that they’re throwing good money after bad,” said Gary Jenkins, head of fixed income at Evolution Securities Ltd. in London. “They’ve finally woken up to the fact that they’re not going to get this money back.”

The default probability, which is based on a standard pricing model, assumes investors would recover 40 percent of the bonds’ face value were Greece to fail to meet its obligations within five years.

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