DEFINITION of 'Treasury Index'

An index based on the auctions of U.S. Treasury bills, or on the U.S. Treasury's daily yield curve. It is commonly used in determining mortgage rates for mortgages with an unfixed component and as a performance benchmark for investors in the capital markets as it represents a rate of return that investors would be able to get from almost any bank, with minimal effort. Treasury indexes are proprietary. The calculations of treasury indexes and their components vary by the financial institution calculating the index.

BREAKING DOWN 'Treasury Index'

Components of a treasury index are likely to be the weighted average prices of five-year, ten-year and bond-futures contracts. Because the components have different investment time frames, each weighting, based on investment duration, is adjusted for equal contribution to the index.

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