TREASURIES-Bonds dip slightly in Asia ahead of 10-year sale

TOKYO Wed Jan 9, 2013 12:33am EST

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TOKYO Jan 9 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasuries inched lower in Asian trading on Wednesday, ahead of an offering of 10-year notes later in the session as well as an upcoming 30-year bond sale.

* The Treasury will sell $21 billion in 10-year notes on Wednesday and $13 billion in 30-year bonds on Thursday.

* A sale of $32 billion of three-year notes on Tuesday saw strong non-dealer bidding. The high yield was 0.385 percent, in line with expectations.

* But some market participants were wary that the sales of longer maturities would proceed as smoothly.

* "I think the 10- and 30-year sales will be tougher," said Hiroki Shimazu, an economist at SMBC Nikko Securities in Tokyo.

"The shorter end is supported by expectations of the Fed's easy policy for some time to come, but further out, there is uncertainty about such matters as the possibility of a U.S. downgrade in the longer term," he said.

* Last week, Treasuries dropped after U.S. policymakers reached a deal to avoid the "fiscal cliff" of tax hikes and spending cuts that could have pushed the economy back into recession. Benchmark yields rose to eight-month highs after minutes of the Federal Reserve's December meeting raised concern that it could begin to phase out its bond-buying by the end of this year.

* Yields on 10-year Treasuries rose to 1.878 percent in Asian trade on Wednesday, from 1.866 percent in late U.S. trade on Tuesday.

* Yields on 30-year Treasuries stood at 3.081 percent, also up from 3.065 percent on Tuesday.

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