Treasury raises $24 billion in 10-yr note auction

AP News
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Posted: Feb 08, 2012 5:27 PM
Treasury raises $24 billion in 10-yr note auction

The U.S. government easily managed to sell new 10-year debt on Wednesday. U.S. debt continues to be a safe haven for global investors who are nervous about ongoing talks in Europe for a second bailout of Greece.

The Treasury Department auctioned $24 billion of 10-year notes at a yield of 2.02 percent Wednesday.

There were $3.05 worth of bids for every dollar sold, slightly lower than the average of $3.10 in the last six auctions. Though demand fell slightly, market watchers have been surprised at the consistently high demand in recent months for U.S. debt, despite the low yields they carry.

The government will auction $16 billion of 30-year bonds on Thursday as part of plans to raise $72 billion this week.

"Concerns about global growth are still obvious," said Peter Boockvar, managing director at trading firm Miller Tabak & Co. "Why else would there be such demand for 10-year Treasuries yielding 2 percent?"

After three days of delays, Greek coalition leaders began crucial debt talks Wednesday. The Greek prime minister was scheduled to review a draft deal on steep cutbacks demanded by creditors in return for a euro130 billion ($170 billion) bailout.

Bond traders preferred to wait for a definitive outcome to the talks and didn't trade much in the secondary market.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury inched up to 1.99 percent from 1.98 percent late Tuesday. Its price fell 6.2 cents for every $100 invested.

In other trading, the yield on the two-year bill rose to 0.26 percent from 0.25 percent.

The yield on the 30-year bond remained flat at 3.15 percent, while its price fell 9.3 cents.

The three-month T-bill paid a yield of 0.08 percent.