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Hedge Funds Scramble to Unload Greek Debt

So much for that big fat Greek payday.

Hedge funds that in the last month or so have purchased an estimated 4 billion euros ($5.2 billion) of beaten down Greek bonds that mature on March 20 are now trying to unload their positions, according to brokers and traders.

That is because it is becoming clear to one and all that Greece — under pressure from its financial backers — is preparing to impose a broad-based haircut that would hit all investors with a loss of 50 percent or more, whether they agree to the deal or not.

The problem is that while buying the bonds over the last few months was easy, as many European banks were unloading their positions, getting out now is proving to be near impossible. Liquidity has dried up and investors are avoiding Greek paper as if it were the plague.

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