Europe still hopes to avoid triggering Greek CDS

athens+has+refused+to+consider+restructuring+its+debts 3497 800510409 0 0 14018001 300 Europe still hopes to avoid triggering Greek CDSConcerns about Greek debt have reached a point where ignoring the possibility of default simply seems unreasonable. Reuters reports that for the first time European officials have begun to speak openly about potential approaches to restructuring Greek debt.

The situation in Greece holds substantial importance to the derivatives market because of its implications for credit default swaps. A substantial portion of credit default swaps reference sovereign debt and Greek bonds have seen a steady market throughout the current crisis.

The concern for derivatives traders emerged weeks ago as quiet discussion and has since been confirmed by recent announcements. Officials seem insistent on only considering methods of restructuring Greek debts that would not trigger a credit event, such as voluntary agreements from the largest debt holders.

"A restructuring or a rescheduling, which would constitute a default situation… are off the table for me," French Economy Minister Christine Lagarde told Reuters.

By not triggering a credit event, Europe would force investors to maintain exposure to Greek debt, which European commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Olli Rehn believes is necessary for the country to recover.

Greek prime minister George Papandreou has spoken out in adamant opposition to any form of debt restructuring, including the proposed soft restructuring.

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