U.S. government debt yields fell further Thursday, a day after the Federal Reserve promised "patience" in making future monetary policy decisions.
The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note, which moves inversely to price, was lower at around 2.658 percent, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond was also lower at 3.017 percent. The 2-year note yield fell 5 basis points to 2.492 percent, still above the yield on the 5-year note at 2.468 percent.
The moves in trade come after the Federal Reserve adopted a more cautious tone in the previous session. The U.S. central bank said it would be "patient" with further interest rate hikes, signalling a potential end to its tightening cycle amid signs of a possible economic downturn.
The Fed also removed reference to "further gradual increases" to the federal funds rate in its statement and held its benchmark rate steady, a signal some market participants took to mean that it may slow the pace of interest rate increases in 2019.
In a separate release, FOMC members also mentioned the reduction to the central bank's balance sheet. The committee issued a separate three-paragraph statement noting that "it is appropriate at this time to provide additional information regarding its plans to implement monetary policy over the long run." Fed Chair Jerome Powell is hosting a press conference from Washington, D.C.
The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits climbed to near a 1-1/2-year high last week, kindling early concerns that the labor market could be decelerating.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits jumped 53,000 to a seasonally adjusted 253,000 for the week ended Jan. 26, the highest level since September 2017, the Labor Department said on Thursday. The rise was also the largest since September 2017.
— CNBC's Sam Meredith contributed reporting.