Treasury prices narrowly mixed ahead of auctions

AP News
Posted: Nov 06, 2009 5:54 PM

Treasury prices mostly rose Friday after the government said the nation's unemployment rate climbed to a 26-year-high of 10.2 percent last month.

The jump in unemployment from 9.8 percent in September increased demand for safe haven investments. Stocks posted modest gains as investors saw the Labor Department's report as a sign that the Federal Reserve would hold interest rates low until at least well into next year.

In late trading, the 10-year note, often used as a benchmark for interest rates on consumer loans, rose 6/32 to 101. Its yield fell to 3.50 percent from 3.53 percent from late Thursday.

The advance came ahead of debt auctions next week. Treasury prices often slip ahead of the results.

The government is auctioning off $81 billion in debt next week _ $40 billion in three-year notes, $25 billion in 10-year notes and $16 billion in 30-year notes.

The 30-year bond fell 1/32 to 101 20/32. Its yield was flat at 4.40 percent.

The price of the three-year note rose 4/32 to 100, pushing its yield down to 1.36 percent from 1.41 percent.

In other trading, the two-year note rose 2/32 to 100 9/32, while its yield fell to 0.85 percent from 0.89 percent.

The yield on the three-month T-bill rose to 0.04 percent from 0.03 percent. Its discount rate stood at 0.05 percent.

The cost of borrowing between banks slipped. The British Bankers' Association said the rate on three-month loans in dollars _ the London Interbank Offered Rate, or Libor _ fell to 0.274 percent from 0.275.