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Treasury Department auctions $12 billion of 30-year bonds at a high yield of 2.87%

Key Points
  • In the latest FOMC minutes, the Fed indicated that an interest rate hike later in 2017 was almost certain, even with low inflation.
  • The U.S. Treasury auctioned $12 billion in 29-year and 10-month bonds.

U.S. government debt yields were lower Thursday, as investors digested the latest minutes from the Federal Reserve as well as latest Fed speeches.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note sat lower at around 2.332 percent at 1:03 p.m. ET, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond was down at 2.869 percent. Bond yields move inversely to prices.

U.S. Markets Overview: Treasurys chart

On Thursday, investors are likely to be still be digesting the latest minutes published by the Federal Open Market Committee, after following the release.

In the latest FOMC minutes, the U.S. central bank was almost certain, even if low inflation continues to weigh on sentiment. Speeches from leading members of the Fed kept the spotlight on the minutes and the outlook for monetary policy.

Fed Governor Jerome Powell said Fed policy has been and should continue to be gradual in terms of hiking rates. He also argued that a gradual plan to shrink the central bank's balance sheet should help prevent an interest rate spike. The governor added that emerging markets are likely to manage normalization well.

Meanwhile, Fed Governor Lael Brainard said low or neutral interest rates increase the risk of asset price bubbles.

The Treasury Department auctioned $12 billion in 30-year bonds at a high yield of 2.87 percent. The bid-to-cover ratio, an indicator of demand, was 2.53.

Indirect bidders, which include major central banks, were awarded 62.8 percent. Direct bidders, which includes domestic money managers, bought 10.6 percent.

U.S. producer prices rose in September as the price of gasoline recorded its biggest increase in more than two years amid production disruptions at oil refineries in Texas caused by Hurricane Harvey, reported Reuters.

The Labor Department said its producer price index for final demand increased 0.4 percent last month after rising 0.2 percent in August. In the 12 months through September, the PPI jumped 2.6 percent. That was the biggest gain since February 2012 and followed a 2.4 percent jump in August.

The Treasury budget is due out at 2:00 p.m. ET.

In other news, President Donald Trump on Thursday signed a new executive order aimed at expanding health-coverage options and reducing costs for millions of Americans — an order that Obamacare defenders fear will damage gains made under that health-care law.

In commodities, crude prices fell into the red in morning trade, following news that U.S. fuel inventories had risen.

—CNBC's Jeff Cox contributed to this report.