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US Treasury yields rise after Senate, House pass GOP tax plan

Key Points
  • Both the House of Representatives and Senate have passed the Republican tax bill.
  • The legislation now moves to President Donald Trump's desk before becoming law.

U.S. government debt yields rose on Wednesday after the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives passed a sweeping tax bill.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.497 percent at 2:50 p.m. ET, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond was up at 2.876 percent. Bond yields move inversely to prices.

Earlier, the 10-year yield hit a high of 2.503 percent, its highest level since March 20 when the 10-year yielded as high as 2.513 percent.

U.S. Markets Overview: Treasurys chart

Washington remained the center of attention as Republicans drew even closer to clinching victory on sweeping tax cuts. Yields continued their trek upward Wednesday after both the Senate and the House of Representatives passed one of the largest tax bills in decades.

The bill would slash tax rates for businesses while temporarily trimming the tax burden on most, but not all, individuals.

"Now that tax reform is almost signed into law, people are looking at the $1.5 trillion increase in the deficit and what that will mean for yields," explained Craig Bishop, vice president of U.S. fixed income at RBC Wealth Management. "If you do get a pickup in growth: what does that mean for the Fed? Does it have to become more aggressive down the road?"

But Bishop also stressed that recent moves in Treasury yields are likely due to activity in Germany after the country unveiled a plan to expand the amount of debt it will issue in 2018. German bund yields jumped higher after the news Tuesday, appearing to pull U.S. debt yields along for the ride.

The 10-year German bund was last trading at 0.4 percent.

"I think going into this move, I would point to the Treasurys' relationship to the bund," said Bishop. "Last summer when Draghi came out with something viewed as hawkish the bund moved upward and Treasurys moved in lockstep."

While no major speeches are set to take place by the U.S. central bank, Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari told CNBC on Tuesday that it wasn't the Federal Reserve's duty to protect investors from stock market losses.

—CNBC's Jacob Pramuk, Patti Domm and Gina Francolla contributed to this report.