Bernanke’s Last Stand?

Posted by Mark Jasayko, CFA, Portfolio Manager

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By keeping a close eye on the Bloomberg terminal this morning, there appears to be a very focused effort to buy the 10-year US Treasury bond to keep the yield from touching 3% for the first time in over two years. In fact, this particular benchmark bond was trading at 3% going back as far as the 4th quarter of 2008, almost five year ago. It would be further confirmation that the 30-year secular bull market in bonds is clearly in the rearview mirror (I have been on record numerous times since the beginning of the year that the secular bull market in bonds ended in July 2012).

It is pure speculation, but the motivation for all this buying this morning could be to avoid the headlines that would occur if the 10-year Treasury bond hits 3%. The expected QE “taper” from the Fed is only two weeks away and the bond market appears to be telegraphing its apparent certainty that it will occur. It is a bit like upstaging Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve.

Look out for the “3%” headlines if the last stand of Treasury bond-buying relents and the bond market ends up pushing the yield over that high profile threshold.

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