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Treasuries Advance on Higher Job Claims Data

Treasury price action was driven by external forces on Thursday, just a day ahead of the next batch of potentially important U.S. data Friday. Argentina set the tone early, with an investor conference call failing to restore faith that the country could restore its balance sheet without sparking social unrest.

The Merval stock index tumbled 15% at one stage and this kept a safety bid lit under Treasuries which closed higher, despite the huge (2-5%) short-covering rally in stocks on a trio of key tech earnings reports. The September bond cleared 101-23 Wednesday highs, tripping stops, but the ebb and pull of emerging market and equity forces kept the contract from clearing its intersection of 100- & 200-day moving averages just below the 102-handle.

Leveraged accounts were heard behind the low-volume rally, helped by the S&P downgrade of Argentina, before the contract ran out of steam. The curve flattened initially, but ended unchanged at +161 basis points. Fed VC Ferguson was confirmed by the Senate Banking Committee for a full term on the Board of Governors.

Producers Price Inded, retail sales and U. Michigan sentiment are due Friday.

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