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China Debt Sale Fails for First Time in 23 Months on Cash Crunch

China’s Finance Ministry failed to sell all of the debt offered at an auction for the first time in 23 months owing to a cash squeeze that threatens to exacerbate a slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy.

The ministry sold 9.53 billion yuan ($1.55 billion) of 273-day bills, less than the 15 billion yuan target, according to Chinabond, the nation’s biggest bond-clearing house. Agricultural Development Bank of China Co. raised 11.51 billion yuan in a sale of six-month bills last week, less than its 20 billion yuan goal.