The ability of the bond market to defy the cues seen elsewhere in the financial market has been relatively impressive over the past few weeks. It could even be a bit puzzling, at times. Specifically, global financial markets freaked out about coronavirus. Stocks and bond yields fell abruptly. Coronavirus case count growth then stopped accelerating and financial markets began to move in the other direction. This was especially true for the US stock market, and I would go so far as to say "mostly true" for Chinese equities markets. But bonds generally continued calling those bluffs. As a new week begins, those bets look a little less reckless, and any additional gains would make them look downright prescient.
Bonds are leading the charge because, unlike stocks (which can follow flights of fancy and present day performance), bonds are tasked with adjusting for future economic changes. Even though coronavirus and COVID-19 won't spell the end of the human race, bonds know they'll have a measurable economic impact. Much of the resilience we're witnessing is the simple accounting for that impact. At the start of the current week, it means 10yr yields are challenging the most recent consolidation range, potentially sending a signal that rates will be willing to spend more time near multi-year lows than previously thought.
Economic data is moderately important this week although there aren't too many big-ticket market movers. Thursday's Philly Fed Index is the only report with a fairly consistent track record of causing a reaction in bonds lately. Friday's Markit PMIs can also fill that role if they fall far enough from consensus. Apart from that coronavirus headlines remain relevant, as do any additional updates from central banks or government officials about the monetary or fiscal policy responses.