After seeing significant weakness in the previous session, treasuries showed a lack of direction over the course of the trading day on Wednesday.
Bond prices spent the day bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before closing roughly flat. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, slipped by less than a basis point to 2.971 percent.
The choppy trading came following the Chinese Ministry of Commerce’s announcement of 25 percent tariff on $16 billion worth of U.S. goods.
The goods being targeted by China include large passenger cars and motorcycles as well as various fuels and fiber optical cables.
The announcement by China came after the U.S. finalized a list of approximately $16 billion worth of Chinese imports that will be subject to a 25 percent tariff.
The second tranche of tariffs, which are due to take effect on August 23rd, follows the first tranche of tariffs on approximately $34 billion of Chinese imports that went into effect on July 6th.
Traders seemed reluctant to make any significant moves amid another quiet day on the U.S. economic front.
Meanwhile, the Treasury Department sold $26 billion worth of ten-year notes, attracting slightly below average demand.
The ten-year note auction drew a high yield of 2.960 percent and a bid-to-cover ratio of 2.55, while the ten previous ten-year note auctions had an average bid-to-cover ratio of 2.62.
The bid-to-cover ratio is a measure of demand that indicates the amount of bids for each dollar worth of securities being sold.
On Thursday, the Treasury is due to finish off this week’s series of long-term securities auctions with the sale of $18 billion worth of thirty-year bonds.
Trading on Thursday may also be impacted by reaction to reports on weekly jobless claims and producer price inflation.