Negotiations between Greece and its international lenders over reforms to unlock remaining bailout aid have made headway and an agreement could be closer this month, a government official said on Sunday.
Most top credit rating agencies say they would not cut Greece's rating to default if it misses a payment to the International Monetary Fund or European Central Bank, a stance that could keep vital ECB funding flowing into the financial system.
Euro zone officials sought to wring policy concessions from Greece on Wednesday to unlock urgently needed aid after Athens said it would present a list of reforms for legislation to show it is serious about implementing its promises.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Monday reshuffled his team handling talks with European and IMF lenders, a move widely seen as an effort to sideline embattled Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis to a less active role in negotiations.
"We're going bust." "No, you're not." "You're strangling us." "No we're not." "You owe us for World War Two." "We gave already."
UBS's (UBSG.VX) chairman said a default by Greece is seen by the International Monetary Fund as "systemically controllable" and he believed it would have a negligible impact on the Swiss bank itself, according to a newspaper interview published on Saturday.
Greece offered some concessions on Friday on reforms demanded by international lenders in return for new funding before Athens runs out of money, but euro zone creditors said negotiations needed to speed up to get a deal by June.
Greece can scrape together enough cash to meet its payment obligations until June, euro zone and Greek officials said on Wednesday, playing down fears of an imminent default as hopes receded of a deal with its creditors to release fresh aid.
World stocks climbed back toward all-time highs on Tuesday as upbeat European earnings reports and expectations of a sixth straight rise in German business confidence helped offset worries about a possible Greek default.
The International Monetary Fund's member nations on Saturday warned of risks to the global economy from exchange rate shifts and geopolitical tensions as they took note of "moderate" global growth and "uneven prospects."
Greece will need to tap all the remaining cash reserves across its public sector -- a total of 2 billion euros ($2.16 billion) -- to pay civil service wages and pensions at the end of the month, according to finance ministry officials.
Investors will cast a wary eye on the latest gauges of the United States' economic health this week, while troubled Europe shows early signs of turning the corner.
Even if it survives the next three months teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, Greece may have blown its best chance of a long-term debt deal by alienating its euro zone partners when it most needed their support.
When it opened in 1963, Ghana's oil refinery symbolized pride and hope for the first African country to escape colonial rule. Now the plant stands idle in a sign of the economic shadow that has crept over one of the continent's brightest stars.
Greece confirmed it will pay a 450 million euro ($485 million) loan installment to the International Monetary Fund on Thursday, a government official told Reuters.
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