Article Highlights

  • Fed's Yellen, ECB's Draghi to speak on Friday
  • Investors seek signals ECB is close to paring bond purchases
  • Some Treasury bill yields rise on debt ceiling concerns
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U.S. Treasury yields edged higher on Thursday as investors waited on central bank speeches in Jackson Hole for fresh indications on monetary policy, while some Treasury bills weakened on concerns about the U.S. debt ceiling.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi were due to speak at the central bank conference in Wyoming on Friday.

“We’re waiting to see if anything comes out of Jackson Hole, I don’t think anyone is putting any big positions on here,” said Lou Brien, a market strategist at DRW Trading in Chicago.

Market participants will be watching for any signals that the ECB is close to paring its bond purchases, though two sources have told Reuters that Draghi will not deliver any new policy message at the event.

The Fed is widely expected to announce a plan to reduce its balance sheet at its September meeting.

Benchmark 10-year notes fell 6/32 in price to yield 2.19 percent, up from 2.17 percent on Tuesday.

Benchmark yields have held in a tight range since falling to almost two-month lows on Friday on concerns about political discord in Washington and tensions between the United States and North Korea.

Yields on Treasury bills due in early October rose on worries that payments on the debt could be delayed if U.S. lawmakers fail to raise the debt ceiling before the government runs out of funds, which is expected in late September.

Concerns about the debt ceiling have increased since U.S. President Donald Trump said late on Tuesday that he would be willing to risk a government shutdown to secure funding for a border wall.

Yields on Treasury bills due on Oct. 5 rose as high as 1.175 percent and bills due on Oct. 12 touched 1.206 percent, both the highest since Aug. 10.

Republicans including Paul Ryan said they did not agree that a government shutdown is desirable.

Fitch Ratings said on Wednesday that a failure by U.S. officials to raise the federal debt ceiling in a timely manner would prompt it to review the U.S. sovereign rating, “with potentially negative implications.”