Euro zone government bond yields jump; German Bund hits 2-year high
Euro zone government bonds yields rose in early trading on Wednesday, with the benchmark German Bund yield rising to a two-year high as investors increasingly priced in the possibility of the ECB slowing its bond-buying.
Core government bond yields were up by around 3 basis points, while Italy’s 10-year yield was up 5 bps, reaching its highest since September 2020.
The moves follow a big sell-off in euro area government bonds on Monday driven by speculation that the ECB may slow its pandemic emergency bond buying and concerns over Italy’s economic reform path.
Market attention is focused on euro zone inflation data for April, due at 0900 GMT. British consumer price inflation more than doubled in April.
Later in the session the latest FOMC meeting minutes will be published. There are also a number of European Central Bank speakers, including chief economist Philip Lane who is due to speak at 1550 GMT.
“We think EUR rates markets are looking toward ECB communication with hope,” wrote ING rates strategists in a note to clients.
“With the default expectation among investors being that PEPP purchases will have to be phased out into the end of the programme, planned for March 2022, it seems to us that only the ECB has the power to stop the accelerated rise in sovereign bond yields.”
At 0735 GMT, Germany’s 10-year bond yield was up 3 bps at -0.081%. Italy’s 10-year yield was up 5 bps at 1.1455%.
U.S. Treasuries were calmer, with the 10-year yield up 2 bps and trading within the month’s ranges.
In terms of issuance, Finland started selling its 3 billion euro ($3.67 billion) 10-year bond via a syndicate of banks. Germany is expected to sell 4 billion euros of 10-year bonds.
The European Union launched bonds on Tuesday that will complete the bulk of funding for its SURE unemployment scheme.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Elizabeth Howcroft, Editing by William Maclean)