``Writing down 4.7 billion euros ($5.2 billion) of privately held senior bonds to help fix Greek lenders may cost the nation 49 billion euros. Banks may only be able to bail in the privately held bonds if they do the same to state-guaranteed notes used as collateral for European Central Bank loans. That would potentially hand the Greek government a 49 billion-euro obligation, even as it struggles to pay pensions and civil-service wages. Excluding the state-backed notes, also called phantom bonds, from a bail-in could lead to lawsuits from private investors... The government-guaranteed bonds are the legacy of measures taken to prop up Greece's four major lenders, including National Bank of Greece SA, during the financial crisis. They are referred to as phantom bonds because the banks issued the notes to themselves to get round ECB emergency-funding rules.''

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