The cost of insuring against default on European corporate debt fell, heading for the first weekly decline in four weeks.
The Markit iTraxx Crossover Index of credit-default swaps on 50 companies with mostly high-yield credit ratings dropped eight basis points to 710.5, at 8:53 a.m. in London, and is down from 753 last week. A decline signals improvement in perceptions of credit quality.
The Markit iTraxx Europe Index of 125 companies with investment-grade ratings fell two basis points to 172.5, compared with 183 last week.
The Markit iTraxx Financial Index linked to senior debt of 25 banks and insurers fell six basis points to 288 and the subordinated index declined seven to 488.
The Markit iTraxx SovX Western Europe Index of 15 governments fell five basis points to 311.
A basis point on a credit-default swap protecting 10 million euros ($12.6 million) of debt from default for five years is equivalent to 1,000 euros a year. Swaps pay the buyer face value in exchange for the underlying securities or the cash equivalent should a borrower fail to adhere to its debt agreements.
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