Long-dated Treasury yields fell on Thursday after data showed another 5.25 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week amid coronavirus shutdowns.
The Labor Department said a total of 5.245 million Americans filed for state unemployment benefits for the week ended April 11, versus the Dow Jones estimate of 5 million. The number marks a decline from 6.6 million in the prior week. The new filings bring the crisis total to just over 22 million, nearly wiping out all the job gains since the Great Recession
Meanwhile, U.S. housing starts for March came in at 1.216 million, the Commerce Department said on Thursday, compared to the expected 1.3 million. March's data is worst monthly decline since March 1984, when there was a decline of 26.42%.
Yields plunged on Wednesday after the record declines in the latest manufacturing and retail data highlighted the dire outlook for the U.S. economy as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
President Donald Trump insisted on Wednesday that the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. has "passed the peak." As of Thursday morning, more than 639,000 cases have been confirmed stateside, resulting in more than 30,000 deaths.
Auctions will be held Thursday for $90 billion of 4-week Treasury bills and $70 billion of 8-week bills.