After nearly going bankrupt and crashing out of the euro zone in 2012, Greece's fortunes have revived sharply in recent months as a six-year recession shows signs of bottoming out and investor confidence in the country's prospects is rising.
In the latest sign of optimism, Piraeus Bank, the country's second-biggest lender, became on Tuesday the first Greek lender to regain bond market access since 2009, when the country plunged into crisis.
The bank's 500 million euro three-year unsecured bond issue attracted bids and was set to be priced at 5.125 percent.
Also on Tuesday, Greece's debt agency sold 3-month treasury paper at the cheapest borrowing cost since its debt crisis escalated in early 2010, with foreign investors buying up half of the issue. Athens raised 1.3 billion euros, pricing the T-bills at a yield of 3.10 percent.
(Read more: Piraeus CEO: Greek banks will be Europe's best)
In Athens, the focus has increasingly turned to when Greece can return to the bond markets as 10-year government bond yields have dropped below 7 percent, their lowest level since the country's 237-billion euro bailout started.
Athens officially plans to sell a small five-year bond at some point in the second half of the year. But falling bond yields for peripheral euro zone countries have encouraged Greek officials to consider tapping markets even earlier, in a move that would bolster Samaras's election prospects in May.
"Market conditions are improving much faster than we had expected and this means that we could tap markets sooner than we planned," a senior government official told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
"A successful market return by the banks will help us a lot to go out to the markets ourselves," the official added.
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