After seeing moderate strength for much of the session, treasuries accelerated to the upside following the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy announcement.
Bond prices pulled back off their best levels going into the close but remained firmly positive. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, tumbled by 7.9 basis points to 2.535 percent.
With the notable decrease on the day, the ten-year yield ended the session at its lowest closing level in well over a year.
The rally by treasuries came after the Fed announced its widely expected decision to leave interest rates unchanged while also indicating the central bank no longer expects to raise rates this year.
The Fed decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 2-1/4 to 2-1/2 percent in support of its mandate of fostering maximum employment and price stability.
The central bank’s forward projections also indicated interest rates are likely to remain unchanged for the remainder of the year.
The forecast for interest rates to be unchanged at the end of the current year compares to the December projections indicating two rate hikes.
The downward revision to the rate projections comes as the Fed noted data received since its January meeting points to a slowdown in economic growth from the solid rate seen in the fourth quarter of 2018.
The Fed reiterated that it will be patient as it determines future adjustments to interest rates to support a sustained economic expansion, strong labor market conditions, and inflation near 2 percent.
Michael Pearce, Senior U.S. Economist at Capital Economics, said the reaction by treasuries suggests “investors were surprised by the dovish tone of the accompanying statement and economic projections.”
Meanwhile, the Fed also confirmed that it intends to conclude the gradual reduction of its balance sheet by the end of September.
The Fed noted it plans to slow the reduction of its holdings of Treasury securities by reducing the cap on monthly redemptions from the current level of $30 billion to $15 billion beginning in May 2019.
The central bank also said its intends to continue to allow its holdings of agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities to decline, consistent with the aim of holding primarily Treasury securities in the longer run.
Reaction to the Fed announcement may continue to impact trading on Thursday along with reports on weekly jobless claims, Philadelphia-area manufacturing activity and leading economic indicators.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com
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