Compared to what it could have been, today turned out to be relatively calm for bond markets. From a day over day standpoint, 10yr yields are only 2bps lower and Fannie 3.5s are just over a quarter point higher. But from peak to trough, the gaps are much bigger--5/8ths of a point in MBS and nearly 8bps in Treasuries.
Those gaps were made possible by the initial reaction to ECB President Mario Draghi's Press Conference. Earlier in the morning, the ECB Announcement itself specified that "additional measures" would be announced later at the press conference. Market participants were apparently holding their breath for bigger bombshells because as Draghi got underway, bonds sold-off progressively the longer he went without unveiling the "measures" promised 45 minutes earlier.
When he finally got around to discussing the expected topics, it was largely in line with the consensus. In other words, the highest probability was for some form of LTRO (long term refinancing operation, which the ECB has employed before), and some advancement in the discussion about purchasing assets. Both of those were delivered, albeit without much flair.
Markets gradually calmed down, but were only able to move so far in the other direction while Draghi remained seated (because who knows if he's going to say something significant before the end!). When he finally got up to end the question and answer portion, bond markets moved into positive territory not even 3 seconds later. Surely, that's mostly a hilarious coincidence, but it was fitting nonetheless. Markets got what they expected from the ECB and were quickly ready for Draghi to stop talking. Ever since then, it's been nap-time so we can rest up for tomorrow morning's NFP.
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