Treasury yields jump after ECB ramps up easing measures

Treasury yields turned higher on Thursday after European Central Bank boosted its emergency bond-buying program by more than expected.


The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note jumped 5 basis points to 0.81% and the yield on the 30-year bond also rose to 1.60%. Yields move inversely to prices.

The European Central Bank said it will increase its Pandemic Emergency Purchase Programme by 600 billion euro, bringing the program's total to more than 1 trillion euro in a bid to cushion the economic fallout from the coronavirus.

"There is a causality from the ECB. You could make an argument more and more stimulus raises the risk of more inflation. That's why the German long end is selling off, weighing on the US long end," said John Briggs of NatWest.

Yields initially were lower after disappointing jobs data. The Labor Department said Thursday filings for unemployment insurance claims totaled 1.877 million last week. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been looking for 1.775 million new claims.

Continuing claims, which provide a clearer picture of how many Americans remain unemployed, totaled 21.5 million, a gain of 649,000 over the past week, also worse than Wall Street expected.

Investors are also monitoring an array of downside risks, including nationwide mass protests against racial injustice, the continuing threat of the coronavirus pandemic and rising tensions between the U.S. and China.

Peaceful protests continued across major cities on Wednesday night but tensions appeared to ease after an upgrade of the murder charge for the police officer who knelt on the neck of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, for nearly nine minutes until his death. The three other officers at the scene have also been charged in connection with Floyd's death.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump's administration on Wednesday banned Chinese passenger planes from flying into the U.S. from June 16, in a bid to strongarm Beijing into allowing U.S. airlines to resume flights into China.

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, more than 41 million claims have been filed, though the previous week's figures indicated that the number of continuing claims had fallen sharply.

Auctions will be held Thursday for $80 billion of 4-week Treasury bills and $70 billion of 8-week bills.

CNBC's Patti Domm contributed reporting.