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Argentina Backtracks as $16 Billion Claims Sink Talks

In the three days since the U.S. Supreme Court shot down Argentina’s final appeal of a decade-old defaulted debt case, the behavior of the country’s leaders has bordered on the erratic.

First, President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner vowed to defy the order to pay out $1.5 billion to billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Singer, a stance her economy minister echoed when he mapped out a plan to skirt the ruling the next day. Her lawyer in Manhattan then reversed course yesterday, saying the government was willing to negotiate with creditors. That new conciliatory line didn’t last long either. Fernandez’s cabinet chief said this morning that the government has now decided against sending officials to New York for talks.