Sales of French and Spanish bonds have performed well after recent credit downgrades for eurozone nations. The euro was also up on the news.
Two closely watched bond auctions appeared to perform better than expected on Thursday, as Spain and France offered government bonds that were met with strong demand.
France raised 9.46 billion euros in bond sales on Thursday while Spain sold a total of 6.6 billion euros in the auction of four-, seven-, and 10-year bonds, better than the target of 3.5 - 4.5 billion euros.
The success was partially attributed to the announcement that the International Monetary Fund would be seeking to double its financial crisis aid fund by raising an additional $600 billion.
The ratings agency Standard & Poor's had downgraded both countries last week, taking France's treasured AAA rating and sticking Spain with AA-, down two grades from A.
The euro rose on the news in the early afternoon on Thursday to a two-week high of $1.29.
Author: Stuart Tiffen (AFP, Reuters)
Editor: Nancy Isenson