WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of the Treasury is offering $62 billion of Treasury securities to refund approximately $45.0 billion of privately-held Treasury notes maturing on February 15, 2017. This will raise new cash of approximately $17.0 billion. The securities are:
- A 3-year note in the amount of $24 billion, maturing February 15, 2020;
- A 10-year note in the amount of $23 billion, maturing February 15, 2027; and
- A 30-year bond in the amount of $15 billion, maturing February 15, 2047.
The 3-year note will be auctioned on a yield basis at 1:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, February 7, 2017. The 10-year note will be auctioned on a yield basis at 1:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday, February 8, 2017. The 30-year bond will be auctioned on a yield basis at 1:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, February 9, 2017. All of these auctions will settle on Wednesday, February 15, 2017.
The balance of Treasury financing requirements will be met with the weekly bill auctions, cash management bills, the monthly note and bond auctions, the February 30-year Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS) auction, the March 10-year TIPS reopening auction, the April 5-year TIPS auction, and the regular monthly 2-year Floating Rate Note (FRN) auctions.
Projected Financing Needs
Based on current fiscal forecasts, Treasury intends to maintain coupon issuance sizes at current levels over the upcoming quarter. Treasury will continue to monitor projected financing needs and make appropriate adjustments as necessary. Treasury plans to address changes in any seasonal borrowing needs over the next quarter through changes in regular bill auction sizes and/or cash management bills.
In February 2016, Treasury reiterated its intent to increase the supply of Treasury bills. Given current projected financing needs over the next few years, Treasury expects that the supply of bills will increase to a prudent level with the existing auction schedule.
The debt limit places a limitation on the total amount of money that the United States government is authorized to borrow to meet its existing legal obligations, including Social Security and Medicare benefits, military salaries, interest on the national debt, tax refunds, and other payments. The debt limit does not authorize new spending commitments. It simply allows the government to finance existing legal obligations that Congresses and presidents of both parties have made in the past.
The Bipartisan Budget Act suspended the debt limit through March 15, 2017. If Congress fails to increase or further suspend the debt limit by March 15, Treasury can take certain extraordinary measures to continue to finance the government on a temporary basis.
Extraordinary measures will allow the government to continue to meet its obligations for a period of time after March 15. That said, it is impossible to provide a precise forecast as to how long the extraordinary measures will last. Treasury will provide greater clarity at a later date regarding how long extraordinary measures will allow Treasury to continue to borrow.
Test Buyback Operation
Since 2014, Treasury has conducted periodic testing of existing IT infrastructure to ensure that buyback functionality remains operational. Within the next quarter, Treasury intends to conduct another small-value buyback operation to continue testing the buyback infrastructure. Details of such an operation will be announced at a later date.
These small-scale buyback operations should not be viewed by market participants as a precursor or signal of any pending policy changes regarding Treasury’s use of buybacks.
Small-Value Contingency Auction Operation Test
Treasury believes that it is prudent to regularly test its contingency auction infrastructure. Treasury’s contingency auction system has been used routinely over the last several years to conduct mock auctions. Consistent with the Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee’s (TBAC) recommendation, Treasury is announcing that it intends to conduct a small-value test auction using its contingency auction system within the next quarter. More details about this small-value auction test will be announced at a later date.
This small-value auction should not be viewed by market participants as a precursor or signal of any pending policy changes regarding Treasury’s existing auction processes.
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. The next quarterly refunding announcement will take place on May 3, 2017.