November 16, 2017 / 7:01 AM / a year ago

JGBs inch down slightly as Nikkei rallies

TOKYO, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Japanese government bonds inched slightly lower on Thursday in the face of rallying equities, though decent demand at a 20-year auction underpinned bond market sentiment.

The benchmark 10-year cash JGB yield rose half a basis point to 0.045 percent, while the 10-year JGB futures contract ended up 0.01 point at 150.80.

The Nikkei stock average jumped 1.5 percent on a bargain hunting-inspired rally after six days of losses.

The 20-year JGB yield was up half a basis point at 0.580 percent, after dipping to 0.570 earlier in the session.

The Ministry of Finance’s sale of 1 trillion yen ($8.84 billion) of 20-year JGBs with a 0.60 percent coupon, saw 80.8990 percent of the bids accepted at the lowest price of 100.45.

The sale drew bids of 4.13 times the amount offered, up from the previous sale’s bid-to-cover ratio of 4.05 times.

Shorter maturities firmed slightly, with the 2-year JGB yield and the 5-year JGB yield both down half a basis point at minus 0.195 percent and minus 0.120 percent respectively.

Weekly portfolio flow data from the finance ministry showed that Japanese investors continued as net sellers of foreign bond holdings in the latest week through Nov. 11.

$1 = 113.0600 yen Reporting by Tokyo markets team; Editing by Sunil Nair

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