'FT' sees Poland, Czech Rep.

By bne IntelliNews February 8, 2010
surviving troubles that hit central Europe. Unlike a year ago, when the region had been seen in danger of a meltdown due to the global economic crisis, investor interest in the more solid economies of central Europe such as Poland and the Czech Republic remained strong, the Financial Times daily wrote. It noted that "Central European currencies softened and stock markets dropped on Friday as the region's financial community reacted to the troubles experienced by the debt-laden economies of Greece, Portugal and Spain, but the overall impact of the turmoil in the euro-zone was smaller than expected." The Warsaw Stock Exchange's widest WIG index fell by 3.29% on Friday while the Prague exchange dropped by 3.6%. The zloty fell by 0.42% to 4.09 against the euro. Euro-denominated bonds were still in demand and Polish credit default swaps were 149bps, or USD 149,000 to insure USD 10mn debt annually over five years, more than half of Greece, the newspaper stresses. It quotes Poland's deputy finance minister Dominik Radziwill as saying that Poland has become a safe haven . "We have become an alternative for investors who are looking at the periphery of Europe. We can see an increase in interest on the part of foreign investors in Polish debt," the minister said. FT also quotes Lars Christensen, an economist with Danske Bank, who notes that a key reason for the muted market response was that investors had learnt to differentiate the countries of the region. tom

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