* Profit-taking, consolidation before U.S. payrolls report Friday
* Spain's bond auctions draw demand, damping safe-haven demand
* Muted reaction to small climb in weekly jobless claims
* Mid-September FOMC meeting minutes due this afternoon
(Updates comment, prices) By Ellen Freilich
NEW YORK, Oct 4 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasuries prices slipped on Thursday on profit-taking as traders played defense in case Friday's U.S. employment report shows better than expected September job growth.
"Some accounts believe the payrolls data will be better than the consensus forecast," said Tom di Galoma, managing director at Navigate Advisors LLC.
He noted a report from consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas showing planned job cuts announced for the month of September at a 15-year low.
"There is decent profit taking on the Challenger survey which is pointing to a better than consensus non-farm payroll figure tomorrow," he said.
Though yields on Spanish debt have recently risen, Spain found buyers for its debt at auction, which also damped demand for safe-haven assets like U.S. government debt.
The benchmark U.S. 10-year note was down 10/32, its yield rising to 1.65 percent, in the middle of its recent range.
"Spain played a part and there also have been some corporate rate locks and, to a small extent, a concession starting to be built in ahead of next week's supply," said Justin Lederer, Treasury strategist at Cantor, Fitzgerald in New York.
The Treasury will auction three-year notes, 10-year notes, and 30-year bonds next week.
"Flows feel pretty light and we are back to the weekly lows in what has been a very, very tight trading range," Lederer said. "Most people are waiting, rightfully so, for tomorrow; clearly the non-farm payrolls data will be the most important data going forward, given the focus of Fed policy."
The consensus forecast culled from a Reuters poll of l00 respondents is for non-farm payroll growth of 113,000 jobs.
Some traders pointed to the perceived outperformance of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney at last night's presidential debate as another reason why yields rose and prices of safe-haven U.S. debt fell.
"A Romney win implies better prospects for the economy and potentially less Fed intervention," said Jefferies & Co money market economist Thomas Simons, referring to the support the U.S. bond market has gotten from the Federal Reserve purchases of Treasuries intended to stimulate lending and economic growth.
Minutes from the Federal Reserve's mid-September policy meeting will be released this afternoon.
(Editing by W Simon)
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((-------------- MARKET SNAPSHOT AT EDT (0952 EDT/1352 GMT) ---------------------
Change vs Current Nyk yield Three-month bills 0.095 (+0.005) 0.096 6-month bills 0.135 ( unch ) 0.137 Two-year note 100-00/32 ( unch ) 0.242 Five-year note 100-01/32 (-02/32) 0.615 10-year note 99-27/32 (-08/32) 1.641 30-year bond 98-01/32 (-19/32) 2.849 ))
Keywords: MARKETS USA BONDS/