Yields flat after US manufacturing, housing data

The U.S. Treasury market was little changed on Friday amid economic data that could help shape views on the timing of a rise in U.S. interest rates.

New U.S. single-family home sales fell in June to their lowest level in seven months and May's sales were revised sharply lower, in what appeared to be a minor setback for the housing market recovery.

Earlier, Markit's July flash manufacturing purchasing managers' index edged up to 53.8 from a 20-month low of 53.6 in June.


The data follow news on Thursday that U.S. weekly jobless claims fell to their lowest level in nearly 42 years, according to Reuters, hurting Treasury prices.

Two-year yields, sensitive to talk of higher interest rates, were flat at 0.68 percent. Meanwhile, the yield—which moves inversely to the price—on benchmark 10-year notes was hardly changed from where it traded on Thursday at about 2.26 percent.

Analysts at Rabobank said the U.S. PMI was seen unchanged at 53.6 for July.

"We also get U.S. new home sales (consensus is for a 0.3 percent rise month-on-month): Will they repeat the frothiness seen in existing home sales?" they said in a note, referring to data released earlier this week showing sales of existing U.S. homes rose in June to their highest level in nearly 8-1/2 years.

"If so, that again flatters Fed (U.S. Federal Reserve) hawks, but the picture of strong housing sector amidst a more sluggish overall economy is hardly shocking."

Treasury notes and bonds are viewed as an investment "safe haven" and as such, may draw some support from renewed selling in commodity prices.

Gold prices fell to fresh five-year lows on Friday, while copper prices also tumbled following weak manufacturing activity data from China, the world's second largest economy.

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At the same time, expectations for a rebound in Wall Street shares following upbeat earnings news from online retailer Amazon late on Thursday could boost appetite for risk assets at the expense of fixed income.