TREASURIES-Bond prices rise on unease over Greek elections
* Poor U.S. economic data also stokes bid for bonds * U.S. factory production falls; consumer sentiment weakens By Richard Leong NEW YORK, June 15 (Reuters) - U.S. government debt prices jumped on Friday, as anxiety that the outcome of Sunday's elections in Greece could lead the country to exit the euro caused investors to raise safe-haven bond holdings. Investors are braced for possible market turmoil in case of a victory by the leftist SYRIZA party, which opposes the austerity measures required under Greece's international bailout. Officials from the Group of 20 on Thursday told Reuters that major central banks were prepared to take steps to combat market disruptions that might arise after the Greek elections. "There is a lot of concerns going into the weekend with the Greek election," said Justin Hoogendoorn, fixed income strategist at BMO Capital Markets in Chicago. "People are taking some profits on risky assets and putting money into bonds. It indicates they are taking some money off the table," Hoogendoorn said. Benchmark 10-year Treasury notes rose 21/32 in price to 101-21/32 with a yield of 1.57 percent, down 7 basis points from late on Thursday. On the week, the 10-year yield is on track to fall 7 basis point, putting its quarterly decline at nearly 65 basis points. Adding to the bids for bonds was a spate of disappointing U.S. economic data, which reinforced the view that U.S. growth is slowing for a third consecutive spring as the euro zone debt crisis drags on the global economy. U.S. factory production fell 0.4 percent in May, contracting for the second time in three months, the Federal Reserve reported, while the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan survey showed American consumer sentiment weakened to its lowest level in six months in early June. "We are getting consistent evidence of slowing, that on top of what we are getting from Europe. It's an ugly situation," Hoogendoorn said.
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