Real Borrowing Costs For The US Treasury: May 2021

As of May 2021, the nominal 10 year Treasury rate is 1.6%. The real rate is -0.9%.

Figure 1: Nominal 10 year Treasury yield (blue), 10 year TIPS (red), both in %. NBER recession dates shaded gray; latest recession assumed to end 2020M04. Source: Federal Reserve via FRED, Treasury, and NBER.

It’s noteworthy that — despite the runup in real and particularly nominal rates — May 2021 real rates are still below anything experienced in the recovery from the Great Recession, and only slightly higher than the all-time lows recorded in August 2020 and January 2021 (monthly averages of daily data).

Hence, this seemsan ideal time for the Federal government to lock in interest rates.

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