ECB Monetary Operations On Monday, October 19, the European Central Bank (ECB) announced its weekly Main Refinancing Operation (MRO). This auction, which was conducted on Tuesday, attracted bids for €49.80 billion from euro area eligible counterparties, €11.76 billion less than the amount bid for in the previous week. The bid amount was allotted in full at a fixed rate equivalent to the prevailing main refinancing rate of one per cent in accordance with ECB’s current policy.
Also on Monday, October 19, the Eurosystem and the Swiss National Bank (SNB) conducted a EUR/CHF foreign exchange swap, with a seven-day maturity, to provide Swiss franc liquidity against euro. This operation attracted bids for €5.56 billion, and since this was well below the intended amount of €25 billion, all bids were allotted in full at a fixed price of -0.84 swap points.
On Wednesday, October 21, the ECB, in conjunction with the US Federal Reserve, conducted a seven-day US dollar funding operation through collateralised lending. This attracted bids for $24.19 billion, which amount was allotted in full at a fixed rate of 1.13 per cent.
Domestic Treasury Bill Market In the domestic primary market for Treasury Bills, the Treasury invited tenders for 91-day bills maturing on January 22, 2010. Bids for €52.26 million were submitted, with the Treasury allotting €21.58 million. Since no bills matured during the week, the outstanding balance of Treasury Bills increased by €21.58 million to €600.01 million.
The yield resulting from the auction was 1.458 per cent, i.e. 1.4 basis points less than that on bills with a similar tenor issued on October 16, 2009. The latest yield represented a bid price of 99.6328 per 100 nominal.
On Tuesday the Treasury invited tenders for 91-day bills maturing on January 29, 2010 and 182-day bills maturing on April 30, 2010.
Treasury bill trading on the Malta Stock Exchange amounted to €2.57 million during the week, with €1.07 million trades being conducted by the Central Bank of Malta in its role as a market facilitator and €1.5 million trades being conducted by other brokers.