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Signs of Debt-Ceiling Risk Are Showing Up in the Treasuries Market

  • Traders wary of potential for increased political brinkmanship
  • Tie-up could echo 2013, when bill rates spiked amid shutdown
Updated on

Traders have begun offloading Treasury bills maturing in early March amid concern efforts to extend America’s borrowing capacity may become conflated with measures to set spending priorities.

Congressional leaders faced with the expiration of current spending authorizations at the end of the week released a stopgap spending bill to keep the government operating through Feb. 16. That would bring the next deadline to avert a government shutdown perilously close to the Treasury’s so-called drop-dead-date to avoid a default, which experts forecast may be as soon as early March. Yields on T-bills maturing March 1 and March 8 held steady Wednesday after rising by as much as six basis points Tuesday.