LONDON — The pool of negative-yielding euro zone government bonds hit a new low in August, data from electronic bond trading platform Tradeweb showed on Thursday, as expectations for further interest rate hikes sent borrowing costs across the bloc soaring.
German government bond yields rose to their highest level in more than two months on Wednesday, and ended August with their biggest monthly surge in more than 30 years as data showed inflation in the euro area hitting another record high.
Just 543 billion euros ($545 billion) of euro zone government bonds carried negative yields as of end-August, Tradeweb said, down from 752 billion euros in July.
The end-August number was the lowest since at least 2016, when Tradeweb first started compiling the data for Reuters.
That means negative-yielding bonds made up just 6.6% of a total market worth more than eight trillion euros on the Tradeweb platform, versus around 8.7% at end-July. In late 2020 as much as three-quarters of the total market carried a sub-zero yield.
While all benchmark euro zone government bonds now carry positive yields, Tradeweb’s data also includes inflation-linked bonds, some of which still offer negative yields.
In corporate bond markets, euro investment grade bonds with a below-zero yield totalled around 20 billion euros at the end of August, or just 0.6% of the total market, broadly unchanged from the previous month. (Reporting by Dhara Ranasinghe Editing by Tommy Reggiori Wilkes)