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Short-term T-bill rates dip

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

The Treasury Department sold $19 billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 0.915 percent, down from 0.920 percent last week. An additional $17 billion was sold in six-month bills at a rate of 0.975 percent, down from 0.990 percent.

Both the three-month rate and the six-month rate were the lowest since Jan. 26, when they sold for 0.890 percent and 0.955 percent respectively.

The new discount rates understate the actual return to investors -- 0.931 percent for three-month bills with a $10,000 bill selling for $9,976.90 and 0.996 percent for a six-month bill selling for $9,950.70.

Separately, the Federal Reserve said the average yield for one-year constant maturity Treasury bills, the most popular index for making changes in adjustable rate mortgages, fell to 1.24 percent last week from 1.28 percent the previous week.

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