By Simon Miller
The Netherlands completed a successful bond auction today despite the resignation of the government over budget cuts.
Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte tendered his government's resignation after talks collapsed over an attempt to find further cuts in the country's budget.
Despite this there was good demand from investors who were still attracted by the Netherlands' top credit rating even though rating agencies have warned that this status is under threat from the political turmoil.
The Dutch debt agency managed to sell nearly €2bn of two and 25-year government bonds, just €0.5bn short of its target. Around €1bn of 2-year bonds were sold at an average rate of 0.523% while another billion of 25-year bonds were sold at 2.782%.
Speaking to the Dutch parliament this afternoon following his resignation, Rutte told politicians that the country could not stand still over its debt problems.
"Standing still is not good for the Netherlands. The problems are serious, the economy is stalling, employment is under pressure and government debt is growing faster than the Netherlands can afford. Those are the facts and nobody can run away from them. I'm standing here without pretences, it is up to parliament and the voters," he commented.
Geert Wilders, whose walkout of talks caused the Dutch government's collapse, told MPS: "Either we choose for [Dutch citizens], or for Brussels and unelected bureaucrats."
He added: "We refuse to cut €14bn when at the same time billions are being sent to Brussels, to the terrible ESM emergency fund and Greece. We want to bring the government financing in order but over a few years. We ourselves need to decide what to do, and not Brussels. I say good-bye to this Cabinet and it’s now up to the voter.”