September 20, 2019 / 11:45 AM / 23 days ago

U.S. repo rate falls after Fed repo operation

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The interest rate on U.S. overnight repurchase agreements slipped on Friday after an operation conducted by the New York Federal Reserve that parked $75 billion in temporary cash in the U.S. banking system.

The overnight repurchase agreement (repo) rate was last USONRP= 1.85%-1.95%, compared with 1.90%-2.00% before the latest repo operation. They ended at 1.75% late on Thursday after hitting 10% on Tuesday, according to Refinitiv data.

The U.S. central bank has conducted a series of cash-adding moves since Tuesday as repo and other money market rates soared to levels not seen since the height of the global financial crisis in 2008.

The Fed also lowered borrowing costs by a quarter point for a second time on Wednesday.

Analysts had blamed the ruction in the $2.2 trillion repo market, where banks and Wall Street dealers borrow using mostly Treasuries as collateral, on huge payments for taxes and on bond supply. The cash outflows also exposed the scarcity of reserves in the financial system, they said.

The Fed’s willingness to provide more liquidity on Friday is “suggesting that the funding tightness evident in the U.S. markets earlier this week has not dissipated,” Scotiabank strategists Shaun Osborne and Juan Manuel Herrera wrote in a research note.

Going forward, the New York Fed said on Friday it will conduct a series of overnight and term repo operations from Sept. 23 to Oct. 10.

Reporting by Richard Leong; Editing by Nick Zieminski

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