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JGBs steady to softer as buyers wary after rally

TOKYO, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Japanese government bond prices were steady to slightly lower on Thursday as investors were reluctant to chase debt too far after the market’s steady rally over the past few weeks.

The 10-year JGB yield stood flat at 0.005%, just above its August yield trough of zero percent, with few investors seeing justifications to buy them at negative yields.

“With the yield at this low level, it is hard to see further room for its fall. It is not that the market sentiment is weak but we have no reason to advance further,” said Ryosuke Matsuzaki, market analyst at Mizuho Securities.

The yield on five-year JGBs, the maturity that has been leading the market this month, also retreated 0.5 basis point to minus 0.125%, after hitting a 3-1/2-month low of minus 0.130% earlier in the day.

At the longer end of the market, the 40-year yield rose 0.5 basis point to 0.620% after lacklustre demand at an auction of 500 billion yen of reopened 40-year JGBs.

The 30-year yield also advanced 0.5 basis point to 0.590% while the 20-year yield was flat at 0.390% .

The 10-year JGB futures price slipped 0.06 point to 152.15 . (Reporting by Tokyo Markets Team Editing by Shri Navaratnam)