Eurogroup Agrees To Disburse €7.5BN To Greece Which Will Be Used To Repay Creditors

Once upon a time, markets trembled when Greek bailout implementation headlines were announced, which is what just happened if slightly ahead of our forecast schedule...

... and this time nobody cares. Well maybe the Greeks do, but by now even they realize that most of the "money" they receive will be used to repay creditors and especially the ECB, and they will see virtually none of it.

So, for them, or anyone else who cares, here are the key headlines and details as they come in. Few surprises from what had been leaked previously.

EUROGROUP MEETING ENDS, DEAL ALLOWS LOAN DISBURSEMENT
EU DIJSSELBLOEM: REACHED FULL STAFF LEVEL AGREEMENT ON GREECE

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DIJSSELBLOEM: ESM TO APPROVE E10.3 BLN IN SEVERAL DISBURSEMENT
DIJSSELBLOEM: INSTITUTIONS TO HAVE FINAL CHECK ON LEGISLATION
DIJSSELBLOEM: NEED TO MAKE SURE GREECE STAYS ON FISCAL PATH
DIJSSELBLOEM: AGREED ON METHODOLOGY OF GREECE DEBT SUSTAINBLTY
DIJSSELBLOEM: ASKED ESM TO LOOK AT MEASURES IN DEBT REPAYMENTS
DIJSSELBLOEM: DEBT MID-LONG MEASURES INTO EFFECT JULY 2018
DIJSSELBLOEM: SMP, ANFA PROFITS ALSO PART OF DEBT DEAL
DIJSSELBLOEM: UNUSED ESM FUNDING COULD BE USED TO SWAP GR DEBT
DIJSSELBLOEM: AGREED ON MECHANISM FOR DEBT MEASURES IN L-TERM
DIJSSELBLOEM: IMPORTANT THAT IMF ON BOARD WITH GREECE
DIJSSELBLOEM: IMF TO RECOMMEND NEW PROGRAMME FOR GREECE BY YR END
DIJSSELBLOEM: BUT IMF WILL DECIDE ON NEW DEBT SUSTAINABILITY
DIJSSELBLOEM: DEBT RELIEF WILL BE DELIVERED AT END PROGRAM

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MOSCOVICI: GREECE SHOWED POLITICAL RESPONSIBILITY
MOSCOVICI: ESSENTIAL THAT IMF REMAINS IN GREECE PROGRAM
MOSCOVICI: GREECE WILL BE ABLE TO REPAY STATE ARREARS NOW

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REGLING: LOAN TRANCHES LINKED WITH GR PROGRAM IMPLEMENTATION
REGLING: FIRST GREECE LOAN TRANCHE OF E7.5 BLN IN JUNE
REGLING: SECOND LOAN TRANCHE TO BE GIVEN IN AUTUMN
REGLING: GREECE NOW TO IMPLEMENT OUTSTANDING PRIOR ACTIONS

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According to Bloomberg, the First set of measures includes:

  • Smoothening the EFSF repayment profile under the current weighted average maturity
  • Use EFSF/ESM diversified funding strategy to reduce interest rate risk without incurring any additional costs for former program countries
  • Waiver of the step-up interest rate margin related to the debt buy-back tranche of the 2nd Greek program for the year 2017
  • “Decision on the smoothening of the EFSF repayment profile and the reduction of interest rate risks should be taken as a matter of priority”

For the medium term, the Eurogroup expects to implement a possible second set of measures following the successful implementation of the ESM program:

  • Abolish the step-up interest rate margin related to the debt buy-back tranche of the 2nd Greek program as of 2018
  • Use of 2014 SMP profits from the ESM segregated account and the restoration of the transfer of ANFA and SMP profits to Greece (as of budget year 2017) to the ESM segregated account as an ESM internal buffer to reduce future gross financing needs.
  • Liability management - early partial repayment of existing official loans to Greece by utilizing unused resources within the ESM program to reduce interest rate costs and to extend maturities
  • If necessary, some targeted EFSF reprofiling (e.g. extension of the weighted average maturities, re- profiling of the EFSF amortization as well as capping and deferral of interest payments) to the extent needed to keep GFN under the agreed benchmark in order to give comfort to the IMF and without incurring any additional costs for former program countries or to the EFSF

For the long term, the Eurogroup also agrees on a contingency mechanism on debt which would be activated after the ESM program to ensure debt sustainability in the long run in case a more adverse scenario were to materialize

  • Such mechanism could entail measures such as a further EFSF reprofiling and capping and deferral of interest payments

Eurogroup mandated finance ministry officials from the currency bloc “to verify in the next few days the full implementation of the outstanding prior actions,” for the conclusion of the Greek bailout review, according to e-mailed statement following meeting of euro area finance ministers in Brussels.

EWG of finance ministry officials have been mandated to verify “in particular the corrections to the legislation on the opening up of the market for the sale of loans, and on the pension reform, as well as the completion of all prior actions related to the government pending actions in the field of privatization

Following full implementation of all prior actions and subject to the completion of national procedures, governing bodies of the euro area’s crisis fund ESM will approve EU10.3b disbursement of bailout loans to Greece

  • First sub-tranche of EU7.5b to cover debt servicing needs and to allow a clearance of an initial part of arrears as a means to support the real economy
  • “Subsequent disbursements to be used for arrears clearance and further debt servicing needs will be made after the summer”
  • “Disbursements for arrears clearance will be subject to a positive reporting by the European Institutions on the clearance of net arrears”

Eurogroup “recalls” Greece’s medium-term primary budget surplus target of 3.5%/GDP as of 2018

Ministers set benchmark of Greek debt sustainability:

  • Country’s gross debt financing needs, or GFN, “should remain below 15% of GDP during the post program period for the medium term, and below 20% of GDP thereafter”

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And again, here is the punchline:

First sub-tranche of EU7.5b to cover debt servicing needs and to allow a clearance of an initial part of arrears as a means to support the real economy

In other words, virtually all the €7.5 billion Greece just got as part of its first tranche... will promptly be used to repay its creditors, as has been the case from day one

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The short summary: Greece has promised to implement even more Draconian measures (which may or may not happen) in order to get money that was already promised to it, while the Eurogroup disburses just enough cash to cover the immediate funding needs of the creditors with a little left over to pay for government arrears while demanding even more austerity; future tranches may or may not be paid out if Greece complies with its promises (which will not happen) and meanwhile the Eurogroup says it may someday provide debt relief, once Greece ends its bailout program... which will never happen.