Since stocks dipped last week, I’ve heard the chatter (again) about how a 3% 10-year note has suddenly created a high appetite for Treasurys over stocks (i.e. people are selling stocks in favor of capturing that whopping 3% yield).
But in this post-crisis environment, a rise toward 3% promotes the exact opposite behavior. If you are willing to lend for 10-years locked in at a paltry rate, you are forgoing what is almost certainly going to be a higher rate decade than the past decade. If you need to exit, you’re going to find the price of your bonds (very likely) dramatically lower down the road.
Coming out of a zero-interest rate world, bond prices are going lower/not higher. Here’s the chart of the 10-year Treasury note (price). You can see we’ve now broken the three and a half decade bull market in bonds (yields go up, as bond prices go down) …
Bottom line: The bond market is the high risk-low reward investment in this environment. And there continues to be plenty of fuel for stock prices as money exits bonds.