Belfast Telegraph

Republic of Ireland's borrowing halted as funds rise

The Irish Government is to pull back from the markets-cancelling plan to issue short term 'bills' and put any new bond deals on hold until early next year.

The surprise announcement goes against earlier plans to 're-engage' with investors before the end of the bailout.

The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA), which manages the national debt, said it suspended further borrowing "in view of relatively strong funding."

Irish Government bonds were then stronger in the markets.

The Government is sitting on a cash pile of more than €24bn, more than enough to finance outgoings into 2015.

It's thanks to bailout loans and earlier fund raising efforts including bond deals earlier this year, the sale of Irish Life and of a €1bn debt owed by Bank of Ireland.

"It's a smart move by the NTMA," said bond trader Ryan McGrath of Cantor Fitzgerald.

He said borrowing only to sit on the cash damages perceptions about how indebted Ireland is, because the measure of debt to the size of the economy does not take account of savings.

Belfast Telegraph