Treasury yields fell slightly on Thursday after the latest weekly jobless claims data came in worse than expected.
First-time claims for state unemployment benefits totaled 870,000 for the week ending Sept. 19, higher than a Dow Jones estimate of 850,000.
Meanwhile, continuing claims, which include those receiving unemployment benefits for at least two straight weeks, decreased by 167,000 to 12.58 million during the week ending Sept. 12.
Wednesday saw another plunge for risk assets, with the Dow closing more than 500 points lower as tech stocks tumbled once again, with investors also spooked by uncertainty around the resurgence in coronavirus cases and prospects of further federal stimulus measures.
Federal Reserve policymakers on Wednesday vowed to keep interest rates near zero and retain an accommodative monetary policy stance for years in order to help reduce unemployment, but called for greater fiscal help from Congress.
U.S. business activity slowed in September, a survey showed Wednesday, with manufacturing gains offset by a reversal in the services sector as the recovery appears to be losing momentum at the end of the third quarter.
In other news, President Donald Trump has refused to commit to a peaceful transition of power if he loses the Nov. 3 election, instead suggesting that the election outcome could end up before the Supreme Court, placing further emphasis on his rush to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with a conservative justice before the election.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will resume testimony before Congress at 10 a.m. ET, while August's new home sales figures are published at the same time.
Auctions will be held Wednesday for $30 billion of 4-week Treasury bills, $35 billion of 8-week bills and $50 billion of 7-year notes.