Deadline looms for Greek debt swap deal

Private holders of Greek debt have until tonight to accept a deal that Greece needs to secure a second bailout package, Agence France Presse reported.

It is understood that Greece needs at least 75 percent of bondholders to take a cut of around 50 percent in the value of their holdings – worth 206 billion euros.

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The bondholders include banks, insurers and investment funds – and they have until 8pm GMT to make a decision.

On Wednesday it emerged that more than half of Greece’s creditors had agreed to join in the deal, which aims to erase more than 100 billion euros of Greece’s 350 billion euros of debt.

Olli Rehn, Europe’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner, said the need was vital for the financial stability of the euro zone – and cautioned that said there would be no better offer, the BBC reported.

"It is important that all investors recognize that Europe has committed the maximum funds available to this voluntary debt exchange and that full participation is necessary for the Greek program to move forward."

Rising optimism that the debt swap will be a success successful boosted Asian shares today, AFP reported, adding that the euro and dollar were both up against the yen.

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Details of the unprecedented deal were negotiated during six months of talks between the Greek government and its creditors.

Greece’s next bailout, from the European Union and International Monetary Fund, is worth 130 billion euros.

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