Germany suffered very weak demand for 10-year bonds issued on Wednesday, the country's finance agency said, adding that the disappointing auction "reflected market nervousness."
Germany was able to place only 3.6 billion euros' worth of its benchmark 10-year "Bund" from a total of 6.0 billion euros on offer, said the agency, which issues such bonds.
"The result of today's auction reflect the extraordinarily nervous market conditions. It doesn't mean any refinancing bottleneck for the budget," insisted Joerg Mueller, a finance agency spokesman.
The average yield on the bond was 1.98 percent, the agency added. Only 3.9 billion euros' worth of bids were received.
Analysts worried that the eurozone debt crisis was maybe beginning to slip into the very core of the 17-nation zone, as the euro dropped sharply on the foreign exchange markets after the auction.
"There's been a lot of talk lately that perhaps Germany isn't the safe-haven that many people thought it was," said UBS currency strategist Chris Walker.
Chief analyst at Danske Bank, Jens Peter Sorensen, said the auction "reflects the deep mistrust to the euro project rather than a mistrust to German government bonds."
He said: "As some investors say regarding the euro project - 'if it is broke, then fix it'."