Treasuries declined, pushing 10-year yields to the highest in more than two weeks, before the U.S. sells $21 billion of the notes, the second of three auctions of coupon-bearing securities this week totaling $66 billion.
Thirty-year bonds fell for the fourth time in the past five trading days before the Federal Reserve releases its Beige Book business survey today. Fed Vice Chairman Janet Yellen said asset purchases by the central bank that boost U.S. economic growth will benefit the world. U.S. yields rose before Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy meets French President Francois Hollande in Paris as investors wait to hear if Spain will request a sovereign bailout.
“We have supply,” said David Ader, head of U.S. government-bond strategy at CRT Capital Group LLC in Stamford, Connecticut. “It’s the most immediate thing on the horizon. At these levels, the yields are not that enticing.”
Benchmark 10-year note yields increased three basis points, or 0.03 percentage point, to 1.74 percent at 10:19 a.m. New York time, based on Bloomberg Bond Trader data. The yield touched 1.75 percent, the most since Sept. 24. The 1.625 percent security due in August 2022 fell 1/4 or $2.50 per $1,000 face amount, to 98 30/32. Thirty-year bond yields added three basis points, to 2.95 percent.
The 10-year notes scheduled for sale today yielded 1.75 percent in pre-auction trading, down from 1.764 percent at a previous sale on Sept. 12. That compares with a record-low auction yield of 1.459 percent on July 11.
Investors at last month’s sale bid for 2.85 times the amount of debt available, versus the average of 3.11 for the past 10 auctions of the maturity. The government is scheduled to conclude this week’s sales with $13 billion of 30-year securities tomorrow.
The U.S. sold $32 billion in three-year notes yesterday at record demand. The bid-to-cover ratio, which gauges interest by comparing total bids with the amount of securities offered, was 3.96, topping the previous high last month of 3.94 and an average of 3.56 for the previous 10 sales.
The auction drew a yield of 0.346 percent, compared with a forecast of 0.350 percent in a Bloomberg News survey of nine of the Fed’s 21 primary dealers.
U.S. government bonds have lost investors 0.4 percent this month, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes.
Yields are rising amid signs of improvement in the U.S. economy, as President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney prepare to face off in a Nov. 6 general election.