U.S. Treasuries slipped slightly in Asia trade on Monday, pulling benchmark yields up from five-month lows, as many investors sat tight before a slew of data and speeches from Federal Reserve officials.
Benchmark 10-year notes edged down 1/32 in price to yield 4.787 percent, up from 4.783 percent in late New York trade on Friday - the lowest since late March.
Two-year notes were unchanged to yield 4.873 percent, keeping the yield curve between two- and 10-year yields inverted by about 9 basis points.
Activity was expected to be quiet until the start of U.S. trade. With markets in London closed for a bank holiday, the Bond Market Association recommended trading be suspended at 3 p.m. JST (0600 GMT).
Treasuries have soared in the past two months, dragging benchmark yields down by nearly 50 basis points as investors anticipated an economic slowdown and the Fed pausing a two-year credit tightening campaign, as it did earlier this month.
Persistent worries about the strength of growth will be put to the test this week by a variety of data, including the minutes of the last Fed meeting and a raft of reports including national factory activity and the August jobs report all due on Friday.
But for all the big events ahead Monday offers little in the way of guidance, likely leaving bond traders to take their cue from moves in the stock market.
The minutes from the Fed's August meeting and the Conference Board's August consumer confidence index will kick off the releases this week on Tuesday.
Given the prior dovish interpretation of the statement, we would expect the market to look for hawkish elements in the minutes that could prove damaging to rich front-end valuations, said fixed-income strategists at BNP Paribas in a note to clients.
Fed officials will also come out in force starting on Tuesday, which some analysts said could pose a risk to short-term yields.
Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher speaks on the Fed on Tuesday, then gives a speech on the economy on Wednesday. St. Louis Fed President William Poole talks on understanding the Fed on Thursday.
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will make a variety of appearances in his home state of South Carolina, including a speech on productivity on Thursday.
At the annual Kansas City Fed gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Bernanke avoided discussing the economic outlook directly, sticking to the topic of global economic integration.
As a general matter, we expect Fed rhetoric in the weeks ahead to be more hawkish than otherwise, as the FOMC has a strong incentive to keep investors from thinking that it is 'soft' on inflation, said analysts at Wrightson ICAP.