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Fiji pulls off a coup with $200 million bond offering

AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- While many emerging economies are being battered by volatility in the world's capital markets, the Pacific island nation of Fiji managed to refinance its U.S. dollar-denominated sovereign debt in September at an interest rate about a quarter lower than it was previously paying.

     Taking advantage of the dying months of record-low interest rates in the U.S., Fiji's $200 million global bond offering carried a coupon of 6.625%, down from a 9% rate on a $250 million bond sold in 2011 -- a reduction that suggests improving international confidence in the country's economy and its political situation.

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