Treasuries head south as US stocks end best Q1 in more than a decadeMarch 30th, 2012 by David Waring
US Treasuries tanked, heading towards their steepest quarterly fall since Q4, 2010 even as investor confidence surged in the world’s biggest economy, pushing corporate bonds higher.
Treasuries marched south while corporate bonds moved up in a clear indication of improving investor confidence. Yields on ten-year notes climbed 5 basis points to 2.21 percent. The benchmark yield has increased 34 basis points, or 0.34 percent this quarter, the highest in more than a year. 30-year bond yields rose 7 basis points to 3.34 percent from a two-week low as investors sought high yielding assets following surge in consumer confidence and spending.
The iShares Barclays 20 Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT) shed 1.93 points, or 1.69 percent, for the day, while the Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF (BND) lost 0.17 points, or 0.20 percent over Thursday’s close.
US stocks ended mixed Friday, with the Dow and the S&P 500 notching their biggest first quarter gains since1998 after better-than-expected spending and consumer confidence numbers boosted investor sentiments. Also a consensus over a stronger European rescue fund among the EU finance ministers helped the morale on the last trading day of the quarter.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) zoomed 66.22 points, or 0.5 percent, to 13,212, capping a stellar three-month run that also marked its best first-quarter point gain. The Dow is up 8.1 percent since December end.
The S&P 500 Index (SPX) rose 5.19 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1408.47 with the energy, healthcare and the consumer staple sector advancing the most.
The tech-heavy NASDAQ Composite (COMP) shed 3.79 points, or 0.1 percent, to close at 3091.57, still up 18.7 percent since the New Year’s Day. Retailer Finish Line (FINL) beat revenue estimates and met analysts’ expectations by earning 81 cents per share, but shares still tumbled. Research in Motion (RIMM) rose more than seven percent despite the smartphone maker missing both sales and earnings estimates. Shares of Global Payments (GPN), a credit card payment processor, dropped 9 percent after the firm reported a security breach that could potentially affect 10 million card numbers.
For every stock declining, more than two stocks rose on the NYSE.
Oil prices for May delivery gained 24 cents to close at $103.02 a barrel.
Gold futures for April delivery rose $17.10 to $1,669.30 an ounce.