European officials made $41 billion in emergency financing available to Greece, hoping the easy access to credit would soothe fears that the country will default. EU Finance ministers agreed to price the loans at a below-market interest rate of 5%, as the Greek government is already struggling to pay high borrowing costs on its national debt. The aid package "is a clear and strong commitment," said European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.
"It shows that the euro area is serious in doing what is necessary to secure financial stability and about its commitment to Greece," he added. The IMF will also open
a $14 billion line of credit to Greece. The news boosted the battered euro in overseas
trading early today, rising to $1.364 from $1.35 last week. The currency had fallen as low as $1.327 in recent weeks, reports the Los Angeles Times. But the eurozone's troubles are far from over. Portugal may soon also need a massive bailout.
(Read more European Commission stories.)