December 24, 2013 / 2:50 AM / in 4 years

JGB prices grind higher as BOJ buys bonds in secondary market

TOKYO, Dec 24 (IFR) - Japanese government bond prices inched higher on Tuesday morning, with the five-year and longer-dated sectors in demand on expectations the Bank of Japan’s bond-buying programme will keep prices supported.

The Japanese central bank, as widely expected, offered to buy 600 billion yen ($5.8 billion) worth of JGBs in the secondary market with residual maturities of five to more than 10 years, as part of its effort to revive the world’s third-largest economy.

Domestic real money accounts largely stayed sidelined, however, reluctant to chase prices higher.

The 10-year yield was down 1 basis point at 0.670 percent, while 10-year JGB futures were up 0.11 point at 144.00, holding just a tad below their five-day moving average of 144.01.

The 20-year yield slipped 1 basis point to 1.525 percent, while the 30-year yield eased 1.5 basis points to 1.665 percent.

Earlier, Japan dropped the term “deflation” in describing its economy for the first time in four years amid signs of consumer prices picking up, an indication the government has made progress in its battle with 15 years of grinding price falls.

It also plans to issue 155.1 trillion yen in government bonds in the fiscal year that begins next April, the first planned year-on-year reduction in JGB issuance in markets since 2008.

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