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Treasuries Post Solid Losses

Favorable tech earnings reports from TI, Novellus and Motorola Tuesday set the stage early for bullish tone on stocks and bearish session on Treasuries. This dynamic encouraged profit-taking on curve flatteners and hence underperformance at the front-end.

The majority of data was friendly to the fixed income markets, but was overshadowed by the short-covering on Wall Street ahead of tomorrow's JEC testimony by Greenspan. Core CPI was a scant 0.1% higher in March and housing starts tumbled 7.8% thanks to a reversal of weather-related gains in the Fall contrasting strong Spring seasonal factors. This reduced the positive impact of the housing report and a solid consecutive gain in industrial production and capacity use data made it a wash.

Stocks surged 2-3.5% and the June bond stumbled hard to 100-07 support before rebounding on patient Fedspeak to close down just 13/32 at 100-29, while the 2s/30s spread narrowed 3bp to +227bp. Minneapolis Fed's Stern gave a candid interview on CNBC, with the usually hawkish voter sounding surprisingly patient, prompting late short-covering across the curve.

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