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Treasuries rise as worries over Europe return, stocks end mixed

Treasuries advanced for the second consecutive day as speculation over worsening eurozone debt crisis spurred demand for safe-haven US debts. As French borrowing costs rose, yields on ten-year US Treasuries saw the biggest two-day drop since Jan.

Yields on the benchmark 10-year Treasuries dropped five basis points, or 0.05 percent, to 2.17 percent, despite economists saying the US economy added more than 200,000 jobs in March ahead of the Labor department’s report tomorrow. The spread between 10-year TIPS and 10 Treasury Notes, known as the break-even rate, narrowed to 2.258 percent, the lowest since March 9.

The iShares Barclays 20 Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT) rose 0.81 point, or 0.72 percent, for the day, while the Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF (BND) added 0.16 points, or 0.19 percent to Wednesday’s close.

US stocks closed mixed Thursday, with broader markets falling for the third day in a shortened week as worries over European debt crisis returned despite positive weekly claims data ahead of Friday’s nonfarm payrolls report for March.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) slid 14.61 points, or 0.1 percent, to 13,060.1, off 1.2 percent from last Friday’s close. Bed Bath and Beyond Inc (BBBY) zoomed 8.49 percent a day after retailer announced better-tan-expected fourth-quarter results. Wine maker Constellation Brands Inc (STZ) after the company’s projected earnings for 2012 fell short of analysts’ expectations. Despite posting 6 percent higher same-store sales in March, retailer Costco dropped during the day’s trading.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) shed 1 point, or less than 0.1 percent, to 1,398.08, off 0.7 percent on weekly basis with the consumer-discretionary sector faring the best and the defensive sectors retreating the most among its major industry groups.

The tech-heavy NASDAQ Composite Index (COMP) buckled the day’s trend and added 12.41 points, or 0.4 percent, to close at 3080.50, still down 0.4 percent for the week.

For every two stocks advancing, about four stocks retreated on the NYSE.

Oil prices for May delivery gained $1.84 to close at $103.31 a barrel.

Gold futures for April delivery rose $16.20 to $1,628.50 an ounce.

 

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David Waring

David Waring was the founder of LearnBonds.com and has been a major contributor to the extensive library of investing news and information available on the site. Until the launch of Learnbonds.com in late 2011 there was no single site on the internet catering exclusively to the individual bond investor. This was true even though more individuals own stocks than bonds. Learn Bonds was launched to fill that gap.