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Bonds Prices Rise Sharply

August 17, 2001

NEW YORK (AP) _ Bond prices rose sharply Friday, as plummeting stocks and discouraging economic news sent investors seeking a safe haven.

The price of the benchmark 10-year Treasury note rose 27/32 point, or $8.44 per $1,000 in face value. Its yield, which moves in the opposite direction, fell to 4.83 percent compared with 4.94 percent late Thursday.

The 30-year Treasury bond rose 7/8 point to yield 5.42 percent, down from 5.48 percent a day earlier, according to Bridge Telerate news service.

The rise in bonds corresponded with a withering day in stocks.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 151.74, or 1.5 percent, to 10,240.78. The Nasdaq composite index tumbled 63.31, or 3.3 percent, to 1,867.01, its lowest close since it finished at 1,852.03 on April 10.

Earlier in the day, the government released a report showing a sharp drop in sales of U.S. products overseas, further dimming the outlook for the economy while convincing traders that the Federal Reserve is increasingly certain to cut interest rates.

In other trading, short-term Treasury securities rose between 1/8 point and 9/32 point, while intermediate maturities rose between 15/32 point and 9/16 point.

Yields on three-month Treasury bills were 3.35 percent as the discount fell 0.02 percentage point to 3.29 percent. Six-month yields were 3.32 percent, as the discount fell 0.03 percentage point to 3.23 percent. One-year yields were 3.26 percent, as the discount fell .02 percentage point to 3.17 percent.

Yields are the interest bonds pay by maturity, while the discount is the interest at which they are sold.

The federal funds rate, the interest on overnight loans between banks, fell to 3.69 percent from 3.75 percent.

In the tax-exempt market, the Bond Buyer index of 40 actively traded municipal bonds rose 11/32 point to 107 3/16. The average yield to maturity fell to 5.15 percent from 5.17 percent.

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