2012-08-02bloomberg.com

The U.S. Treasury Department said today it is developing a floating-rate note program that could be operational in a year or more, while it is preparing for possible negative-rate bidding...

The Treasury also said it is "in the process of building the operational capabilities to allow for negative-rate bidding in Treasury bill auctions, should we make the determination to allow such bidding in the future."

Investors who bid at auctions for Treasury bills at negative yields would pay more than face value for the securities, ensuring that if they hold the debt to maturity they will get back less than they paid.

...

The floating-rate notes would be the first new U.S. government debt security since Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, known as TIPS, were introduced in 1997. With a budget deficit estimated at $1.21 trillion this year, the Treasury needs to expand its base of investors, and the notes may appeal to those who are seeking to protect themselves from a possible increase in interest rates or faster inflation stemming from the Federal Reserve's unprecedented stimulus.


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