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Rates mixed on T-bills

WASHINGTON -- Interest rates on short-term Treasury securities were mixed in yesterday's auction.

The Treasury Department sold $19 billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 2.200 percent, down from 2.210 percent last week. An additional $17 billion was sold in six-month bills at a rate of 2.425 percent, up from 2.380 percent.

The three-month rate was the lowest since Nov. 29 when the bills sold for 2.195 percent. The six-month rate was the highest since Sept. 17, 2001, when the rate was 2.570 percent.

The new discount rates understate the actual return to investors -- 2.243 percent for three-month bills with a $10,000 bill selling for $9,944.39 and 2.489 percent for a six-month bill selling for $9,877.40.

In a separate report, the Federal Reserve said yesterday that the average yield for one-year constant maturity Treasury bills, a popular index for making changes in adjustable rate mortgages, fell to 2.60 percent last week from 2.62 percent the previous week.

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