After seeing modest strength in early trading, treasuries came under pressure over the course of the trading day on Thursday.
Bond prices pulled back well off their early highs, ending the day in negative territory. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, rose by 2.6 basis points to 1.977 percent.
With the turnaround on the day, the ten-year yield regained some ground after hitting its lowest intraday level in well over a month.
The rebound shown by treasuries was partly due to profit taking following the rally seen on Wednesday in response to the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy statement.
The Fed statement was interpreted as dovish even though the central bank removed its pledge to remain “patient” regarding normalizing monetary policy.
In her subsequent press conference, Fed Chair Janet Yellen noted that removing the word patient from the statement doesn’t mean the central bank is going to be impatient.
Traders also seemed to focus on the fact that the Fed lowered its outlook for interest rates at the end of this year.
The median projection for the mid-point of the fed funds target range at the end of 2015 is now 0.625 percent, down from the 1.125 percent projection made in December.
Traders initially reacted positively to the apparent dovishness of the Fed but now seem to be expressing some renewed uncertainty about the outlook for interest rates.
Peter Boockvar, managing director at the Lindsey Group, said, “I think it’s fair to say that the concept of being ‘data dependent’ has now been officially neutered. It is no longer clear what data the Fed is most dependent on.”
“It is also no longer clear at what levels the data needs to be for there to be a policy change. These levels have changed so many times already,” he added. “We have ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ monetary policy.”
On the economic front, the Labor Department released a report showing a modest uptick in initial jobless claims in the week ended March 14th.
The report said initial jobless claims inched up to 291,000, an increase of 1,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 290,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to rise to 293,000.
Trading activity on Friday may be somewhat subdued amid a quiet day on the economic front, although speeches by two Fed officials may attract some attention.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com