Borrowing costs for southern European governments dropped to the lowest levels on record on Friday ahead of the European Central Bank's first government-bond buys on Monday. The central bank will start the bond purchases as part of its 1.1-trillion-euro quantitative-easing program aimed at boosting economic growth and inflation in the eurozone. Yields have been steadily declining across the eurozone since the ECB announced its QE program in January. On Friday, the yield on 10-year bonds for Italy, Spain and Portugal all fell to record lows: The yield on Italian bonds fell 6 basis points to 1.268%, the yield on Spanish benchmark bonds lost 6 basis points to 1.179%, while borrowing costs for Portugal declined by 12 basis points to 1.67%, according to electronic trading platform Tradeweb.
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