(By Mani) Investors are expected to buy more Treasury notes and bonds as the worsening Eurozone debt crisis would trigger the safe haven wave. The potential new demand would revive the 10-year Treasury yield, which fell sharply in April.
Total private and official purchases rose to $37.3 billion in April from $20.1 billion in March. As the Eurozone debt crisis returned to the front burner in April, private investors sought the safety of U.S. long-term debt.
Foreign official investors did the same, but bought fewer Treasury securities in April than did private investors, likely due to the fact that they bought a lot of the securities in March. The light demand for equities was also expected as the stock market was little changed during the month.
Both private and official investors shunned government agency debt, likely due to increased prepayment risk on mortgages due to record low mortgage rates driving another wave of refinancing.
Corporate bonds also saw little favor as investors preferred safer government debt amid rising risk aversion. Also weighing on long-term inflows was the fact that domestic investors were slight net buyers of foreign securities in April, after selling a net $14.1 billion worth in March.
"The fact that domestic investors were heavy sellers of foreign securities in March likely limited their sales of such securities in April despite growing concerns about Europe and slowing global growth," Wells Fargo economist Jay Bryson wrote in a note to clients.
Short-term outflows slowed to $5.6 billion in April from $9.4 billion in March due to an increase in private, foreign liabilities of U.S. customers that are managed by U.S. banks or broker dealers to $11.3 billion versus a decline of $5.7 billion in the prior month. This helped to offset a net $16.2 billion in sales of U.S. Treasury bills by foreigners, with private investors selling $5.9 billion and official investors selling $10.3 billion.