Yields on 10-year Treasury notes spiked above 2.8% at one point Thursday morning as ETFs that invest in U.S. government debt continued their decline.
Treasury yields rose to a two-year high on growing speculation the Federal Reserve could begin tapering its bond purchases at the September policy meeting.
The iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (NYSEArca: TLT) was down 1% on Thursday morning to a new multiyear low. [Treasury ETF Weak as 10-Year Yield Tops 2.7%]
In U.S. economic data, the government on Thursday said jobless claims fell to 320,000 in the latest week — the report was better than expected.
“The market is continuing to re-price to the data and keeping a close eye on where the Fed will go,” said Aaron Kohli, an interest-rate strategist at BNP Paribas, in a Bloomberg News report. “The data is following the script the Fed had laid out.”
“While the data hasn’t been great, it’s been good enough to support the notion of tapering,” added Stephen Stanley, chief economist at Pierpont Securities. “They want to wind this down in an orderly way and get it done in a reasonable period of time.”
TLT, the Treasury ETF, was down about 9% for the three months ended Wednesday.
“People are trying to figure out the timing on Fed’s tapering. People are reacting to every piece of economic data,” said Brian Rehling, chief fixed-income strategist at Wells Fargo Advisors, in a Reuters article.
iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF
Full disclosure: Tom Lydon’s clients own TLT.