PRESS RELEASE

Bond markets and long-term interest rates in EU accession countries – second edition

6 October 2003

Today, the European Central Bank (ECB) published the second edition of a report entitled "Bond markets and long-term interest rates in European Union accession countries". This update presents the results of a recent survey, which was designed jointly by the ECB and the European Commission (Eurostat) and carried out with the help of the national central banks of the accession countries. The report provides an overview of how accession country capital markets are structured, particularly in relation to the bond markets and interest rates. The convergence of long-term interest rate levels, as measured by the yield on government bonds or comparable securities, is one of the "convergence criteria" for the EMU, as laid down in Article 121 of the Treaty establishing the European Community.

The report has 12 chapters, one for each country. Each chapter is divided into five sections: (i) market size; (ii) activity in the primary and secondary markets; (iii) calculation of the yield; (iv) interest rates other than capital market interest rates; and (v) authorities involved in bond issuance, bond management and securities market supervision. Section ii also provides information on the liquidity of the secondary markets.

To obtain a hard copy of this report, please contact the ECB's Press and Information Division at the address given below. Alternatively, you can download the full report from the ECB's website [pdf 2.39 MB].

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