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Treasury bill rates mixed

WASHINGTON -- Interest rates on short-term Treasury bills were mixed in yesterday's auction, with six-month bills rising to the highest level since March 2001.

The Treasury Department auctioned $19 billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 3.870 percent, down from 3.890 percent last week. Another $17 billion in six-month bills was auctioned at a discount rate of 4.155 percent, up from 4.125 percent last week.

The three-month rate was the lowest in two weeks, since these bills averaged 3.850 percent on Oct. 24. The six-month rate was the highest since these bills brought 4.22 percent on March 19, 2001.

The discount rates reflect that the bills sell for less than face value. For a $10,000 bill, the price was $9,902.18 for a three-month bill and $9,789.94 for a six-month bill.

Separately, the Federal Reserve said the average yield for one-year Treasury bills, a popular index for making changes in adjustable-rate mortgages, rose to 4.32 percent last week from 4.26 percent the previous week.

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