Portugal returns to bond market. Expats desert Spain. More botanical art.

Portugal faces important test.

The iOnline reports that Portugal is to return to the international bond market today. The last auction of bonds was on April 1, 2011, five days before Portugal asked for help from the Troika. “As promised, Portugal will return to public sale of long-term debt at an auction before the end of the adjustment program” the IGCP (Agency for the Management of Treasury and Public Debt) announced last week, specifically that it will hold an auction of ten year Treasury bonds today (23rd). The amount of bonds being sold is between €500 and €750 million, which apparently is relatively modest – its primarily aim is to test the response of investors, especially in buying debt with longer maturity (they are 10-year bonds). The last auction was held on April 1, 2011, when €1645 million of bonds were auctioned. These were shorter-term debt (15 month term) and the average interest rate 5.793%.

Update – from Yahoo News 24.4.14:

“Portugal breezed through a key bond market test on Wednesday, enjoying sharply lower borrowing costs just weeks before it exits a 78-billion-euro ($108 billion) rescue programme.The successful bond market auction was crucial for the country, showing it can raise its own finances once the international bailout, extended three years ago, comes to an end on May 17. The yield of 3.575% was sharply down on previous interest rates”

Expats desert Spain in droves


Interesting article on the front page of the Telegraph online today The same story is also in the Mail online under a headline “How a life in the sun can spell misery” – reporting how those living in the Med were less happy than those living in Northern European countries.

Apparently nearly 90,000 Britons abandoned their Mediterranean dreams in Spain last year, according to new figures from Town Halls across the country. Registers have recorded a steep drop in the number of Britons, falling 23 per cent from 385,179 on Jan 1 last year to 297,229 at the end of December. Other European expatriates are also taking their leave – the registered German population fell by 23.6 per cent to 138,917 and the French population by 12.7 per cent to just over 100,000. The on-going effects of the Eurozone crisis, a huge property slump and a rapidly shrinking job market have contributed to the exodus, reducing Spain’s total population for the second year running. The only nationality to increase their presence in Spain were the Chinese.

Final piece of botanical art

The reproduction of the botanical art by Angie Gray over the last four blogs has generated very positive feedback. Signed prints are available, as of course are originals – anybody interested should e-mail the blog and I will put you directly in touch with Angie, who is based in Calheta. The final one is the flower of a tulip tree – I will put all of them on our Instagram site (link on the right) together with one of her current “work in progress” – an Angel Trumpet. Thanks Angie!


17 thoughts on “Portugal returns to bond market. Expats desert Spain. More botanical art.”

  1. Couple of small packages turned up in Funchal last Wednesday – both despatched from the UK using the Post Office. One (costing £3.90) had taken three weeks, the other (£3.20) very nearly a month!

  2. My apologies to anyone reading this blog who is Chinese, anyone who has Chinese family members, anyone who has Chinese friends, and anyone who knows that stereotyping any one group is stereotyping all groups.

    Most of all, my condolences to anyone who does not fall into any of the above groups – you’re missing out on some great experiences and you deserve to be included.

  3. Some 3,000 Motorbikes celebrated the “day of the bike today” here, on Madeira – the seemingly endless procession of vintage, classic, modern and two or three wheeled motorbikes, eventually made their way by two or four strokes, along the “Via Rapida” to the “under Airport” area for a blessing (riders & pax) by the priest from Machico = and not a stereo type “biker” amongst them – not sure if the Priest wore his leathers though!

  4. Regarding postal deliveries we too have noticed a marked slow down in service. Letters from the UK and mainland Europe arrive as expected after 3-5 days. However any “small packet” or parcel is now taking nearly a month to arrive. That’s regardless of it being sent by Amazon (all the more painful now we have to pay the postage!) or a private individual. Very frustrating. We’ve lived here over 11 years and think this last 6 months has been very poor. I think I might try and see if our local Post Office has any information…..

  5. Thank You …. getting there – including Pico Ariero! Early morning start where we did x2 short walks, in the cold wind but amazing “alpine” sun and crystal clear azul blue skies, could see for miles – simply spectacular – departed as the coaches arrived!

  6. Jon, hope you have recovered.

    A more professionally produced Flower Festival (May 1 – 7) leaflet this year. It also highlights Reid’s Palace Classic Auto Show on the 10th and 11th May. The English Church is participating with flower displays from the 2nd – 6th May and flower arranging demonstrations on Friday 2nd May at 10.30 and 14.00. Excellent macro photography exhibition in the Espaco Infoarte. We also enjoyed the History of Funchal exhibition in the Sala dos Arcos do Colégio dos Jesuítas do Funchal (near the Town Hall, until the 1st June).

  7. I have to agree totally with Anna as regards the post. That is exactly our experience as well. As regards Amazon, if it is only books you want The Book Depository still offer free postage and there is no minimum order.

  8. Does anyone know when the re-development work in Funchal is due for completion?

    When we were there at Christmas we were told it was due for completion in March but that obviously has not happened. It does seem to be taking a very long time and it must be having an affect on visitors impression of the island. Tourism is so important to Madeira that I would have thought completion of this work would be a priority.

  9. I think it’s expected to take something like another year or so, Mary.
    There is a huge amount being done. You should find links on this
    site where there is a lot of detail on what exactly they’re up to.


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