* U.S. durables better than expected, Treasury yields rise
* But Ukraine-Russia tensions lurk, may support Treasuries prices
* Seven-year auction later in session
By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
NEW YORK, April 24 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasury yields rose on Thursday, as stronger-than-expected durable goods data and robust earnings from Apple suggested the U.S. economy was finally on the mend following a harsh winter season.
Yields on U.S. 30-year bonds climbed after falling for two straight days, while that of benchmark 10-year Treasuries continued to test its 200-day moving average of 2.7271 percent.
Orders for long-lasting U.S. manufactured goods, or durables, rose more than expected in March, while a separate report showed U.S. continuing jobless claims were the lowest since December 2007. Both economic numbers spurred a move away from safe-haven Treasuries
“The durable goods number is just supporting the idea of a decent bounce-back after a poor winter and that we are gradually pulling ourselves out,” said David Keeble, global head of interest rate strategy at Credit Agricole in New York.
“We’re now just waiting for the inflation and wage numbers to pick up to undertake a bigger sell-off.”
An unusually cold and snowy winter disrupted economic activity at the end of 2013 and the beginning of this year, holding back job growth and weighing on industrial production.
The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was last down 8/32 in price to yield 2.71 percent, from 2.70 percent late Wednesday. Prices on 30-year Treasury bonds were also 13/32 lower to yield 3.49 percent from 3.48 percent the previous session.
Treasury prices were already lower before the latest U.S. economic data, thanks to results of Apple Inc. that surpassed expectations. Apple reported sales of 43.7 million iPhones in the quarter ended March, far outpacing forecasts. That drove a 4.6 percent rise in revenue to $45.6 billion, a record for any non-holiday quarter.
“The Apple results sent Nasdaq into the stratosphere, putting Treasuries on a defensive stance,” said Keeble.
Treasuries, however, could get back in favor given tensions continued tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
Russia started military drills near the Ukrainian border with on Thursday in response to operations by Ukrainian forces against pro-Russian separatists and NATO exercises in eastern Europe, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.
Later in the session, the Treasury auctions $29 billion in 7-year notes to complete this week’s sale. (Editing by W Simon)