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Spain easily sells $7.16 bln in short-term debt
Spain easily sells $7.16 billion in short-term debt despite credit rating downgrade
By The Associated Press

MADRID (AP) ' Spain has successfully sold euro5.4 billion ($7.16 billion) in short-term debt with strong demand and interest rates down despite the country's latest credit rating downgrade.

Ratings agency Moody's cut ratings for several countries late Monday including Spain's from A1 to A3. The move follows a similar downgrades by rival agencies Standard & Poor's and Fitch.

The Spanish Treasury sold euro2.94 billion ($3.90 billion) in 12-month bills at an average yield of 1.89 percent, down from 2.05 percent in the last such auction Jan. 17.

It sold euro2.5 billion ($3.31 billion) in 18-month bills at 2.31 percent, down from 2.39 percent.

Demand was more than double the amount offered.

Tuesday's sale was the first since the government last week approved far-reaching labor reforms designed to rekindle confidence in the economy and reduce a near 23 percent unemployment rate.

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