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Markets

Euro zone bond yields fall to early May lows ahead of ECB

  • Germany's 10-year Bund yield, which is closely correlated with Treasuries, fell nearly 3 basis points to -0.234%, the lowest since May 7, falling below lows hit after Friday's US jobs data.
  • The deal came as a test for euro zone rates before the ECB meeting, ING said.
08 Jun 2021

MILAN: Euro zone bond yields fell on Monday, tracking US Treasuries, as euro area investors continued to price in a dovish outcome to the European Central Bank's policy meeting on Thursday.

Recent comments suggesting the ECB will continue buying bonds at the current pace and will not start discussions about a future tapering at its meeting on June 10 have in recent sessions supported the bloc's government bond prices, which move inversely to yields.

In addition to prevailing dovish sentiment, euro area bonds benefited from a rally in US Treasuries on Wednesday.

US Treasury yields fell to their lowest in over a month after a report showed small business owners less confident for the first time in four months and concerned about the availability of labour.

Germany's 10-year Bund yield, which is closely correlated with Treasuries, fell nearly 3 basis points to -0.234%, the lowest since May 7, falling below lows hit after Friday's US jobs data.

"The consensus ahead of the ECB meeting has pretty much settled on the view that the Governing Council will keep the faster pace of asset purchases via the pandemic emergency purchase programme for another quarter," ING analysts said.

Therefore, "the bar for a dovish surprise has been set high," they added.

In the primary market, Italy received over 65 billion euros of demand for a new 10-year bond which raised 10 billion euros.

The deal came as a test for euro zone rates before the ECB meeting, ING said.

But Italian 10-year yields fell 5 basis points to their lowest since May 7 following the sale, suggesting that the market did not struggle to absorb the paper.

According to Annalisa Piazza, fixed-income research analyst at MFS Asset Management, "some 'dovishness' in the next ECB meeting seems to be already in the prices".

She expected the ECB "to sit and wait until the first bulk of (European Union) issuances are absorbed by investors, (and) re-assess risks around the pandemic over the summer".

Most analysts expect euro zone borrowing costs to remain range-bound until Thursday.

According to analysts, data on Germany's ZEW economic sentiment failed to have a meaningful impact on European government bond yields, as expectations of a strong recovery are already priced in.