Italy PM: Euro zone must tackle high bond yields

Reuters News
Posted: Jul 08, 2012 9:11 AM
Italy PM: Euro zone must tackle high bond yields

AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France (Reuters) - Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti said on Sunday the return of sovereign bond yields to danger levels last seen before the European Union summit in June is a concern and needs to be addressed by eurozone finance ministers.

Yields on Spain's 10-year debt rose back above the 7 percent on Friday as the impact from a EU summit last week faded while Italy has also seen its yields surge above 6 percent.

"The wide level of the spreads on the sovereign debt of several eurozone member states is a concern for the financial stability of the euro zone," Monti said at a news briefing on the sidelines of a conference in southern France.

"I believe it is also a concern for the efficient transmission of monetary policy throughout the euro area," he added. "It is, I believe, needed that the Eurogroup works on this and other items developed at the European Council."

Asked about why Italian and Spanish bond yields had returned to pre-EU summit levels, Monti said:

"Spreads have widened again because of several factors I believe, this includes some comments, which I personally think are inappropriate, from political authorities notably from Nordic countries."

Finland has said that it would block the euro zone's permanent bailout fund from buying government bonds in the open market, while The Netherlands also indicated opposition to the bond-buying idea.

(Reporting by Leigh Thomas and Michel Rose; Editing by Erica Billingham)