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Markets

Longer-term yields rise ahead of Georgia election results

  • The benchmark 10-year yield was last up 1.1 basis points at 0.9282%.
  • Probably until the evening with just the runoff election in Georgia, we're still going to see yields in this zone.
Published January 5, 2021
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CHICAGO: US Treasury yields on the longer end of the curve inched higher on Tuesday as the market awaited the outcome of Georgia elections that will determine which party controls the US Senate.

The benchmark 10-year yield was last up 1.1 basis points at 0.9282%.

Ben Jeffery, a strategist at BMO Capital Markets in New York, said the market was on hold as Georgia residents cast their votes for two Senate seats.

"Probably until the evening with just the runoff election in Georgia, we're still going to see yields in this zone," he said.

Continued split control of Congress, with a Republican majority in the Senate and Democratic control of the House of Representatives, would hinder substantial fiscal measures, which would help keep Treasury yields in check. Democratic victories in Georgia could push longer-term yields higher if supply increases to fund more stimulus, according to analysts.

The December employment report due out on Friday was also keeping yields in check, according to Jeffery.

"As investors return from the holidays and start to frame expectations for what the rest of the year is going to look like, the final big update of 2020, being December's jobs figures, will help inform that," he said.

On Monday, the 10-year Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS) yield touched a record low of -1.113% reached in September, while the 10-year TIPS breakeven inflation rate topped 2% for the first time since November 2018.

"The drop in real yields and the increase in breakevens has been a sign of a little bit of optimism that we will start to see inflation begin to pick up," Jeffery said.

The two-year US Treasury yield, which typically moves in step with interest rate expectations, was last down less than a basis point at 0.1132%.

A closely watched part of the yield curve measuring the gap between yields on two- and 10-year Treasury notes was last 1.39 basis points higher at 81.33 basis points.

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