.S. Treasuries slide after jobless claims ease
NEW YORK, July 24 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasuries were off to a shaky start on Thursday, extending early losses as a drop in applications for first-time jobless benefits stoked hopes the labor market could be stabilizing.
The Labor Department said weekly unemployment claims fell 29,000 to 386,000 in the week to July 19, dipping below the psychologically important 400,000 mark for the first time in 23 weeks.
Still, the damage was surprisingly contained for a bond market unusually susceptible to positive economic news. That was partly because, as far as the anemic U.S. job market is concerned, traders are skeptical of one-off improvements that have come and gone before.
"Do we want to run out and suggest this is the major turning point? One week's number doesn't do it for me," said Steve Ricchiuto, chief economist at ABN AMRO.
The benchmark 10-year note <US10YT=RR> was down 20/32, sending its yield to 4.18 percent from 4.13 percent. The two-year note <US2YT=RR> was flat for a yield of 1.55 percent.
The 30-year bond <US30YT=RR> fell 27/32 to give a yield of 5.10 percent from 5.04 percent on Wednesday. The five-year <US5YT=RR> slipped 12/32 for a yield of 3.03 percent from 2.98 percent.
Treasuries had clung to modest gains overnight as Federal Reserve Governor Ben Bernanke's suggestion that the Fed was willing to bring interest rates down to zero if necessary permeated trading in Europe and Asia. ((Reporting by Pedro Nicolaci da Costa; editing by Phil Berlowitz; Reuters Messaging: [email protected]
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