Portugal sold 1.65 billion euros ($2.3 billion) of short-term government debt in hopes of raising funds to payoff debt repayments coming due in April and June. Rating agencies reacted negatively to the offering downgrading the country's debt rating shortly after the auction.
The offering is likely to be the last effort by Portugal to avoid a bailout request which would also require implementation of strict austerity measures.
New York Times, April 2, 2011
Portugal Stages Surprise Bond Auction; Ireland Is Hit With New Downgrade