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Greek Finance Minister: Country Will Default on IMF Payment

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Amid speculation that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is working to craft a last-minute deal with the International Monetary Fund and the European Union, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said that the country will not pay 1.6 billion euros it owes the IMF on Tuesday.

Varoufakis was also asked about the prospect of a last-minute deal, to which he responded, "We hope so." The market is optimistic that a last-minute deal may be reached where Tsipras can walk back his opposition of Sunday's referendum. S&P 500 futures traded to a high of 2,069, though prices have drifted lower on these comments. Futures last traded at 2,062, still up 0.56 percent on the session.

If Greece fails to pay the IMF today, it would be the first country since Zimbabwe in 2001 to default on an obligation. The international bailout program from the EU, ECB and IMF also ends today.

The Associated Press also reported that Tsipras met with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi and European Parliament president Martin Schulz.

On Monday, with Greece's equity markets closed due to capital controls, the U.S.-based ETF that tracks Greece, Global X Funds (NYSE: GREK) fell nearly 20 percent. Year-to-date, prices have fallen 29 percent. Shares looked to be rebounding slightly in Tuesday's pre-market trading, with indications that the price will open 2.5 percent higher.

 

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Posted-In: Alexis Tsipras European Union Greece International Monetary FundNews Eurozone Global Markets

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