January 17, 2013 / 3:10 AM / 5 years ago

JGBs steady; 10-year yield off 4-week low on profit-taking

TOKYO, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Japanese government bonds took a
breather on Thursday as a few investors took profits after the
benchmark yield touched a four-week low, but expectations of
Bank of Japan easing steps next week supported the market. 
    * The BOJ will mull taking additional stimulus action and
doubling its inflation target to 2 percent at its Jan. 21-22
meeting, sources close to the central bank have said.
    * "Ahead of the BOJ meeting, some people see no reason to
sell bonds, but after this week's gains, short-term traders are
booking profits," said a fixed-income fund manager at a Japanese
asset management firm in Tokyo.
    * The 10-year JGB yield was flat at 0.745
percent, after slipping to an intraday low of 0.740 percent, its
lowest since Dec. 18. 
    * The 10-year JGB futures contract ended morning
trading down 0.05 point at 144.26, on track for its first losing
day after a four-session rising streak. Futures rose as high as
144.37 on Thursday, their highest since Dec. 14.
    * The superlong sector was also steady, with the yield on
the 20-year bond flat at 1.730 percent and the
30-year bond yield flat at 1.960 percent.  
    * On Wednesday, the BOJ bought 22.7 billion yen ($257
million) worth of exchange-traded funds to prop up the equities
market, a common step when the broader Topix loses more
than 1 percent in the morning session. Japanese shares were
moderately higher on Thursday.

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