It happened last week. The interest rate on the benchmark 10-year government bond moved above 1% for the first time since the pandemic took hold of the U.S. in March. It is a breach of a psychological level that bears watching this week.

Bond prices move down when interest rates move up, so higher market interest rates represent selling pressure building in the bond market. The enormity of the bond market often is overshadowed by the flashier stock market. The $20 trillion Treasury market is the foundation of global investment markets, corporate and consumer borrowing, and the U.S. dollar as the world’s reserve currency.

The bond market is a behemoth that can bully investors, regulators and politicians. The specter of fast rising interest rates, and fast falling bond prices, is intimidating for everything from household spending to government economic stimulus efforts.

It has been a slow return to 1% for the 10-year Treasury bond. Previous market rate jumps have been greeted with investor buying, not more selling.

Beyond the big profits bondholders have made as investors have rushed to buy bonds with so much economic and political uncertainty, rising bond rates may be an early signal of inflation apprehension. Inflation is the enemy of bond investors. Low inflation expectations have contributed to a strong bond market.

But even the Federal Reserve — a massive buyer of Treasuries in its effort to support the economy — has turned away from decades of inflation-fighting to welcoming a flirtation with mild inflation.

Make no mistake, borrowing rates remain historically low and bond prices remain strong. The precariousness of the pandemic economic recovery continues underpinning a bond market rally as investors look for the relative safety and consistency of fixed income.

Investor confidence that inflation will remain under wraps is key to keeping the bond giant quiet.

Financial journalist Tom Hudson hosts “The Sunshine Economy” on WLRN-FM in Miami, where he is the vice president of news. He is the former co-anchor and managing editor of “Nightly Business Report” on public television. Follow him on Twitter @HudsonsView.