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TREASURIES-Yields edge higher, Fed rate path in focus

       By Karen Brettell
    NEW YORK, June 24 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasury yields edged
higher on Friday and held just above two-week lows reached on
the previous day as investors weighed the likelihood that the
Federal Reserve will spark an economic downturn as it
aggressively hikes interest rates in a bid to stem soaring
inflation.
    Yields have dropped from more than decade highs reached
before last week's Fed meeting, when the U.S. central bank hiked
rates by 75 basis points, the biggest increase since 1994, and
signaled that a similar move is possible in July.
    "It's been a huge move lower really across the curve. ...
It's come down to some pricing out of central bank tightening,"
said Zachary Griffiths, an interest rate strategist at Wells
Fargo in Charlotte, North Carolina.
    Fed funds futures traders have pared back expectations on
how high the Fed is likely to raise its benchmark rate as
concerns about an economic downturn increase. They are now
pricing for the rate to rise to 3.49% by March, down from
expectations last week that it would increase to around 4%. It
is currently 1.58%.
    Griffiths says inflation is unlikely to have peaked,
however, which will likely keep the Fed on an aggressive rate
hike path and keep shorter-dated yields elevated.
    The next major catalyst for the market will likely be the
release of the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) price
index next Thursday, which will be watched for further
confirmation that price pressures remain heated.
    "The focus on economic data at this point is going to be
about as intense as it's been in recent memory," Griffiths said.
    Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said on Thursday that the Fed's
commitment to reining in 40-year-high inflation is
"unconditional" -- but also comes with the risk of higher
unemployment.
    Yields briefly dipped on Friday after data showed that
consumer sentiment fell to a record low in June.
    Benchmark 10-year yields were last at 3.089%. They have
fallen from 3.498% on June 14, the highest since April 2011.

    Two-year Treasury yields were at 3.027%, down from 3.456% on
June 14, which was the highest since November 2007.
    The closely watched yield curve between two-year and 10-year
notes was at 6 basis points, after inverting
early last week. An inversion in this part of the curve is seen
as a reliable indicator that a recession is likely in one to two
years.

    June 24 Friday 10:07AM New York / 1407 GMT
                               Price        Current   Net
                                            Yield %   Change
                                                      (bps)
 Three-month bills             1.66         1.6898    0.056
 Six-month bills               2.42         2.4833    0.056
 Two-year note                 99-5/256     3.0272    0.015
 Three-year note               99-88/256    3.108     -0.008
 Five-year note                97-176/256   3.135     0.001
 Seven-year note               97-130/256   3.1531    0.009
 10-year note                  98-48/256    3.089     0.019
 20-year bond                  96-228/256   3.4676    0.034
 30-year bond                  93-128/256   3.215     0.034

   DOLLAR SWAP SPREADS
                               Last (bps)   Net
                                            Change
                                            (bps)
 U.S. 2-year dollar swap        33.00        -3.75
 spread
 U.S. 3-year dollar swap        14.75        -1.00
 spread
 U.S. 5-year dollar swap         3.50         0.25
 spread
 U.S. 10-year dollar swap        7.50         0.75
 spread
 U.S. 30-year dollar swap      -24.00         2.00
 spread



 (Reporting by Karen Brettell; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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