NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Treasury prices continued to surge Tuesday, pushing the 2-year note's yield to a record low and the 10-year note's yield below 3% for the first time since April 2009, as the looming expiration of Europe's bank lending program boosted demand for the safety of government debt.
What prices are doing: The benchmark 10-year note jumped 19/32 to 104-21/32 and its yield sank to 2.96% from 3.03% on Monday. Bond prices and yields move in opposite directions.
The 30-year bond climbed 1-10/32 to 107-26/32 with a yield of 3.93%. The 2-year note gained 2/32 to 100-2/32 and its yield was 0.61%. Earlier, the 2-year note's yield fell to 0.59%, a record low.
What's moving the market: The European Central Bank's year-long lending program to boost liquidity expires Thursday. As banks in the euro zone gear up to pay back €442 billion, investors are nervous that end of the program could further rock the financial system.
Because Treasurys are backed by the U.S. government, they are viewed as low-risk investments and are attractive during times of economic uncertainty.
What analysts are saying: "Treasury rates this low typically signal a real slowdown in economic activity, or even a recession," said Peter Cardillo, chief market strategist at Avalon Partners. "But I think this is a heightened fear factor and a flight to quality as opposed to any real economic meltdown."
He added that investors are concerned that when banks pay back the loans, the market will face another credit crunch.
|Overnight Avg Rate||Latest||Change||Last Week|
|30 yr fixed||3.65%||3.83%|
|15 yr fixed||2.76%||2.94%|
|30 yr refi||3.67%||3.78%|
|15 yr refi||2.80%||2.98%|
Today's featured rates:
Shari Redstone says she has no interest in taking control of Viacom, rebutting accusations by the company's board that she was planning a takeover of her father's media company. More
Venezuela faces a shortage of nearly every kind: food, medicine, electricity and toiletries. The scarcity reflects Venezuela's spiraling economy and humanitarian crisis. More
ISIS is struggling with its oil business, but it's cranking up what it taxes the people living in its territory. More
In 1998, Ntsiki Biyela won a scholarship to study wine making. Now she's about to launch her own brand. More
The gender pay gap in the labor market is pretty well documented. But the gender gap also exists in the housing market. More