Bond Report: Treasury yields turn higher after trade optimism gains ground

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U.S. Treasury yields shifted higher on Monday as investors anticipated the conclusion of a Phase 1 U.S.-China trade deal following upbeat comments from the Trump administration.

What are Treasurys doing?

The 10-year Treasury note yield TMUBMUSD10Y, +2.10% was up 2.6 basis points to 1.754%, while the 2-year note rate TMUBMUSD02Y, +1.29% edged up 1.8 basis points to 1.580%. The 30-year bond yield TMUBMUSD30Y, +1.97% rose 2.6 basis points to 2.238%. Bond prices move in the opposite direction of yields.

What’s driving Treasurys?

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Bloomberg TV that the trade deal would be finalized this month. In addition, he said European car makers may “not need” to put tariffs on European cars, following President Donald Trump’s request for the Commerce Department to investigate whether foreign auto makers threatened U.S. national security.

The White House had been deliberating whether to impose tariffs on European auto exports of around 5% to 15% by the Nov. 13 deadline.

Demand for haven assets waned as stocks drew strong appetite from market participants. Futures for the S&P 500 SPX, +0.97% showed Wall Street was poised for a higher open, after the key equity gauge closed at a record on Friday. In Asia, South Korea’s Kospi 180721, +1.43% gained 1.4%, while China’s CSI 300 000300, +0.65% advanced 0.7%.

Last week, the stronger-than-expected nonfarm employment report for October eased concerns around the labor market’s health, one of the key engines for the U.S. economy. Strong employment growth, so far, has helped dampen worries that deteriorating global growth and a contracting manufacturing sector would drag the U.S. into a recession.

As for the Federal Reserve, San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly is due to speak at 3:05 p.m. Eastern. The central bank lowered interest rates for the third time in a row last Wednesday, but indicated it would stay on hold barring a sharp worsening of the economic outlook.

What did market participants’ say?

“Growing signs that the partial US-China trade deal is close to being finalized drove market sentiment on Monday with Asian stocks getting a lift from another record close on Wall Street on Friday,” wrote Raffi Boyadjian, senior investment analyst at XM.