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Egypt Raises $1.1 Billion of Debt as Yields Extend Declines

Egypt raised 6.9 billion pounds ($1.1 billion) from the sale of domestic debt as yields extended their declines from records, helped by central bank measures to boost bank funding.

The Ministry of Finance sold 4 billion pounds of nine-month treasury notes with the average yield falling three basis points to 15.669 percent, according to central bank data on Bloomberg. It also sold 1 billion pounds of three-month securities at an average yield of 14.243 percent, 13 basis points less than the previous sale of similar maturity notes, the data show. At a sale of treasury bonds, the ministry sold 1 billion pounds of five-year bonds and 900 million pounds of 10-year notes, or 100 million pounds less than sought.

Treasury yields have retreated from record highs in June after the central bank cut the local currency reserve requirement ratio for banks to 10 percent and started selling 28-day repurchase agreements in addition to seven-day repos. Interim Finance Minister Momtaz El-Saieed said today the government plans to raise the average maturity of local-currency debt to as long as two years from the current period of one-and-a-half years.

“We could reach this level in about six months,” El-Saieed said by phone. Egypt’s average debt maturity fell to 1.3 years at the end of 2011 from 1.7 years in 2010.

The ministry plans to sell 2 billion pounds in three-year bonds and 1.5 billion pounds in seven-year notes on July 30, central bank data on Bloomberg show. The auction will be preceded by sales to raise 11.5 billion pounds in treasury bills on July 26 and July 29, the data show.

The yield on the 5.75 percent dollar bonds due April 2020 rose one basis point last week to 6.26 percent on July 20, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The pound, subject to managed float, gained less than 0.1 percent in the period to 6.0628 a dollar.

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