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Treasuries Extend Upward Move Amid Lingering Coronavirus Fears

Treasuries Extend Upward Move Amid Lingering Coronavirus Fears

Treasuries continued their relentless advance during trading on Thursday, once again pushing the yield on the benchmark ten-year note to a new record low.

Bond prices moved steadily higher over the course of the morning before giving back some ground in afternoon trading. Subsequently, the ten-year yield, which moves opposite of its price, fell by 6.6 basis points to 0.926 percent.

The ten-year yield closed lower for the eleventh consecutive session, ending the day at a new record closing low.

Treasuries continued to benefit from their appeal as a safe haven amid lingering concerns about the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

Investors continue to monitor developments regarding the coronavirus outbreak that has now spread worldwide, as confirmed cases reach more than 95,000 globally.

Coronavirus infections in South Korea have jumped to more than 6,000, with the Korea Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention revealing that three more people died from the virus, bringing the total to 35.

Switzerland has also reported its first death from the virus, while the number of cases in Germany rose by 87 to 349. California declared a state of emergency after a coronavirus-related death in the state, where there are at least 53 confirmed cases.

In U.S. economic news, the Labor Department released a report showing a modest decrease in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended February 29th.

The report said initial jobless claims edged down to 216,000, a decrease of 3,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 219,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to slip to 215,000.

Meanwhile, revised data released by the Labor Department showed U.S. labor productivity increased by less than initially estimated in the fourth quarter of 2019.

The report said labor productivity climbed by 1.2 percent in the fourth quarter compared to the previously reported 1.4 percent jump. Economists had expected the pace of productivity growth to be unrevised from the initial estimate.

The Labor Department also said unit labor costs rose by 0.9 percent in the fourth quarter, reflecting a notable downward revision from the originally reported 1.4 percent spike. The increase in labor costs was also expected to be unrevised.

A separate report from the Commerce Department showed new orders for U.S. manufactured goods pulled back by much more than expected in the month of January.

The Commerce Department said factory orders slid by 0.5 percent in January after surging up by 1.9 percent in December. Economists had expected factory orders to edge down by 0.1 percent.

On Friday, the Labor Department is scheduled to release report on the employment situation in the month of February.

Employment is expected to increase by about 175,000 jobs in February after jumping by 225,000 jobs in January, while the unemployment rate is expected to hold at 3.6 percent.

The monthly jobs report is typically closely watched by investors but could be overshadowed by the latest developments regarding the coronavirus.

The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com