Venezuela defaults on 60 BILLION debt

Venezuela Declared in Default by S&P After Missing Bond Payments

Ratings Agencies Cave: Venezuela Defaulted, Selectively

The restructuring bid is being led by Vice President Tareck El Aissami, whom U.S. entities are barred from dealing with under sanctions designating him a drug kingpin.

Venezuela, one of the world's riskiest credits, was declared in default by S&P Global Ratings after missing two interest payments on its debt.

A negative or inconclusive result could speed the country's descent on a slippery slope towards a default that might see slighted creditors trying to grab assets overseas belonging to Venezuela and its state oil company PDVSA. He insisted, however, the OPEC nation would continue to service its debts.

President Nicolas Maduro's government had summoned creditors to Caracas for talks on Monday about restructuring Venezuela's $60 billion in outstanding bonds, but failed to present a concrete proposal.

Industry body ISDA said it would reconvene on Tuesday to discuss whether PDVSA had triggered a credit default event through a late payment of its 2017N bonds.

The so-called Determinations Committee for the Americas, comprised of 15 financial firms, met in NY following an initial gathering last Friday, "to discuss whether a Failure to Pay Credit Event had occurred" with respect to PDVSA, according to the ISDA.

It has less than United States dollars 10 billion left in hard currency reserves, and yet it must make USD 1.4 billion in debt payments before the end of the year, and another $8 billion next year.

There's still hope for restructuring with only some issues in peril.

Tightening the squeeze on Maduro was an announcement by the European Union on Monday of sanctions including an embargo on arms and equipment that could be used for political repression.

S&P said Venezuela had failed to make $200 million in coupon payments for bonds due 2019 and 2024 within the allowed 30-day grace period.

The EU said it would not recognize Venezuela's Constituent Assembly, a chamber of loyalists appointed by Maduro in August to usurp parliamentary powers, saying its creation had "further eroded the democratic and independent institutions". "We would very likely consider any Venezuelan restructuring to be a distressed debt exchange and equivalent to default given the highly constrained external liquidity", S&P said.

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