Treasurys traded higher on Thursday as the U.S. government's auction of 30-year bonds, the last of three debt auctions this week, was met with weak demand.
The Treasury Department auctioned $16 billion in 30-year bonds at a high yield of 2.560 percent. The bid-to-cover ratio, an indicator of demand, was 2.26, well below the 2.47 recent average.
Indirect bidders, which include major central banks, were awarded 49.4 percent, well above the 47 percent average. Direct bidders, which includes domestic money managers, brought 15.5 percent, versus a recent average of 18 percent.
In the wake of the auction data, the 10-year Treasury is up 4/32 in price, with the yield at 1.97 percent.
The 30-year bond pared some gains after the announcement and was last trading up 14/32 in price, leaving the yield at 2.57 percent, compared to 2.55 percent before the auction.
U.S. Treasury prices pulled up from overnight lows on Thursday as weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales and weekly jobless claims reports inserted some caution into the economic backdrop and forecasting of U.S. monetary policy.
The data, which showed U.S. consumer spending barely rebounded in January suggests economic growth was slow in the first quarter, and caused a knee-jerk reaction to buy.
The number of American's filing for first-time jobless claims rose more than expected last week, however the underlying trend remains consistent with a strengthening labor market.