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U.S. Treasury debt prices climbed on Wednesday, with yields on the benchmark 10-year note slipping below 1.9 percent after a weaker-than-forecast jobs report bolstered arguments the Federal Reserve may be slow to raise interest rates.
The 30-year Treasury, a maturity favored by many foreign investors, was last yielding 2.48 percent, down 6 basis points.
Treasurys, an asset class which on Tuesday completed a fifth straight quarter of gains on a total returns basis, jumped early on Wednesday when the ADP National Employment Report showed private-sector jobs increases of 189,000 in March.
Forecasters had expected a gain of 225,000 in the ADP report, which may signal softness in the U.S. government's closely watched monthly jobs data due to be published on Friday.
"The market is bracing for the payrolls number on Friday," said Wilmer Stith, fixed income portfolio manager at Wilmington Trust in Baltimore. "We got a little disappointing ADP number. Interest rates are lower worldwide, and all that's propelling Treasury prices higher."
The ADP data weighed on Wall Street, which often moves in the opposite direction of Treasuries.
Other economic reports on Wednesday, including mixed car sales last month and growth in the Institute for Supply Management's factory activity index touching a 22-month low, also spurred Treasuries buying.
Yields on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note last stood at 1.87 percent, down 6 basis points on the day.
In comparison, a 10-year German bund was last yielding 0.172 percent.
Friday's jobs report will be especially important for gauging America's economic prospects since U.S. economic data such as gross domestic product has been mixed in recent weeks, according to institutional investors.
Economists polled by Reuters are looking for total U.S. employment to have grown by 245,000 jobs in March, down from 295,000 in February. The unemployment rate is expected to have remained at 5.5 percent.