Rates on US Treasury bills climb at weekly auction

Interest rates on short-term Treasury bills rose in Monday's auction with rates on six-month bills climbing to their highest level in nine years.

The Treasury Department auctioned $42 billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 1.090 percent, up from 1.085 percent last week. Another $36 billion in six-month bills was auctioned at a discount rate of 1.240 percent, up from 1.220 percent last week.

The three-month rate was the highest since those bills averaged 1.180 percent on July 24. The six-month rate was the highest since those bills averaged 1.400 percent nine years ago on Oct. 27, 2008.

The discount rates reflect that the bills sell for less than face value. For a $10,000 bill, the three-month price was $9,972.45 while a six-month bill sold for $9,937.31. That would equal an annualized rate of 1.108 percent for the three-month bills and 1.265 percent for the six-month bills.

Separately, the Federal Reserve said Monday that the average yield for one-year Treasury bills, a popular index for making changes in adjustable rate mortgages, stood at 1.39 percent on Friday, down slightly from 1.42 percent on Oct. 10.