Weak demand at auction of 10-year Treasury debt

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's signature appears on a freshly printed $20 bill. Mark Wilson/Getty Images

(CBS/AP) NEW YORK - Investors had little appetite for U.S. government bonds at the latest auction of 10-year Treasury notes.

The Treasury Department sold $24 billion of the notes at a yield of 1.68 percent, sharply higher than the 1.63 percent the 10-year Treasury was trading at prior to the auction.

The bond selloff came a day before a Federal Reserve announcement that some think will usher in a new round of "quantitative easing," or bond buying, in an effort to boost economic growth.

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Ever since the U.S. Labor Department reported an increase in jobs last Friday, investors have been abandoning the safe shores of government bonds and buying stocks.

There were $2.49 in bids for every $1 on offer at the auction, a sharp drop from the $3.16 average of the previous six auctions.

The price of the note fell 9.375 cents for every $100 invested. Its yield rose immediately after the auction but has leveled off at 1.64 percent, compared with 1.63 percent late Tuesday.

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