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Treasuries Close Roughly Flat Following Choppy Trading Day

After recovering from an initial move to the downside, treasuries showed a lack of direction over the course of the trading session on Friday.

Bond prices spent much of the session lingering near the unchanged line before ending the day roughly flat. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, edged down by less than a basis point to 2.736 percent.

With the slight decrease on the day, the ten-year yield still dipped to its lowest closing level in nearly nine months.

The choppy trading on the day came as many traders remained away from their desks following the Christmas Day holiday on Tuesday and ahead of the New Year's Day holiday next Tuesday.

On the U.S. economic front, the National Association of Realtors released a report showing a continued drop in pending home sales in the month of November.

NAR said its pending home sales index fell by 0.7 percent to 101.4 in November after plunging by 2.6 percent to 102.1 in October. The continued decline in pending home sales matched economist estimates.

A pending home sale is one in which a contract was signed but not yet closed. Normally, it takes four to six weeks to close a contracted sale.

While pending contracts have fallen to their lowest level since 2014, NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun said there is no reason to be overly concerned and predicts solid growth potential for the long-term.

A separate report from MNI Indicators showed growth in Chicago-area business activity pulled back in December after accelerating sharply in November, although the pace of growth slowed by much less than anticipated.

MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer dipped to 65.4 in December after spiking to 66.4 in November, with a reading above 50 still indicating growth in regional business activity. Economists had expected the barometer to drop to 62.0.

The economic calendar for next week starts off relatively quiet due to the holiday on Tuesday, although the Labor Department's monthly jobs report is likely to be in focus later in the week.

While traders are also likely to keep an eye on any developments in Washington, D.C., political commentators suggest an agreement to end the partial government shutdown is unlikely to be reached before Democrats take control of the House next Thursday.

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