The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell Thursday to a record low 1.54 percent in midday trading, extending its year-to-date decline to more than 20 percent.

Since Jan. 1 the yield on the benchmark U.S. government bond has fallen 21.47 percent as investors abandoned risky assets like stocks and commodities for the perceived safety of dollar-denominated debt.

The yield on German 30-year bonds, also seen as a safe financial haven, dropped to a record low of 1.765 percent, which for the first time is below the rate on Japanese securities, Bloomberg News said.