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France easily sells $10.8 billion in bond auctions

March 1, 2012
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PARIS—The French treasury says it sold euro8 billion ($10.8 billion) in bonds amid relative calm on financial markets ahead of a two-day summit of European leaders aimed at charting a path back to growth.

On the secondary market, where bonds trade openly after they're issued, the yield, or interest rate, on France's 10-year bonds fell by nearly 0.10 percentage point Thursday to 2.78 percent. That's below the 3 percent level widely considered a benchmark of investor confidence.

Earlier this year, Standard & Poor's downgraded France because of concerns over its economy as well as Europe's ability to get a grip on a debt crisis that's been raging for nearly two years. The decision was widely anticipated so the impact has been fairly muted.

(This version CORRECTS Corrects "last month" to "earlier this year".)

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