Getty Images / Xinhua News Agency
US stocks gained slightly on Thursday after falling jobless claims offered an encouraging sign of labor-market improvement.New weekly claims for unemployment insurance totaled an unadjusted 712,000 for the week that ended Saturday. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected a reading of 775,000.The mild uptick puts the S&P 500 at the brink of yet another record high. Stocks edged higher on Wednesday after Democrats embraced a bipartisan stimulus deal calling for $908 billion in relief funds.Oil wavered ahead of a key OPEC+ decision on production cuts. West Texas Intermediate crude fell as much as 1.4%, to $44.66 per barrel, before paring losses.Watch major indexes update live here.
US equities rose modestly on Thursday after encouraging jobless claims data revived hope for a labor-market recovery.
New weekly claims for unemployment insurance totaled an unadjusted 712,000 for the week that ended Saturday, the Labor Department said Thursday. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected a reading of 775,000. The decline snapped a two-week streak of increases for initial filings.
Continuing claims, which track Americans receiving unemployment benefits, fell to 5.5 million for the week that ended November 21. That also landed below the consensus estimate.
Here’s where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET market open on Thursday:
S&P 500: 3,671.26, up 0.1%Dow Jones industrial average: 29,973.64, up 0.3% (90 points)Nasdaq composite: 12,386.33, up 0.3%
Read more: Morgan Stanley handpicks 42 stocks to buy as their company-specific strengths help them deliver strong growth for many years to come
Still, some economists fear the decline can largely be attributed to the Thanksgiving holiday, and that claims will again swing higher in the coming weeks.
“The drop in claims reported today reverses the increases of the past two weeks, but it would be a mistake to regard the decline as mere mean reversion,” Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said. “The drop is the fluke, not the increases which preceded it.”
Investors will get another look at how the labor market is recovering on Friday when the Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes its November nonfarm payrolls report. Economists expect the US economy to have added 486,000 payrolls through the month. The unemployment rate is forecasted to dip 0.1 points to 6.8%.
Read more: Dennis Lynch has tripled his clients’ money since 2010. The star fund manager shares 5 bets he’s seizing on for 2021 and beyond – and explains how he avoids making costly investing mistakes.
Thursday’s gains pull the S&P 500 to the brink of another record after choppy trading the session prior. Stocks erased morning losses and closed higher on Wednesday as legislators took their biggest steps yet toward reaching a stimulus compromise. While a deal hasn’t yet been finalized, Democratic lawmakers embraced a bipartisan proposal that includes $908 billion in relief funds. The move puts pressure on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to accept the measure.
Tesla gained after Goldman Sachs upgraded its shares to “buy” from “neutral” in a note to clients. The bank also lifted its price target for the automaker to $780, implying a 37% rally from Wednesday’s close over the next 12 months.
CrowdStrike jumped after its fiscal third-quarter report beat expectations for profit and revenue. The cybersecurity firm also lifted its current-quarter guidance above Wall Street’s estimates.
Read more: Zoom has soared 497% this year. 3 analysts – including one of the most accurate in tech – break down whether you should buy, hold, or sell the stock as a vaccine becomes widely available.
Bitcoin rose to a 24-hour high of $19,466.58, further retracing its Tuesday losses.
Spot gold edged as much as 0.7% higher, to $1,844.02 per ounce. The US dollar weakened against a basket of Group-of-20 currencies and Treasury yields dipped.
Oil prices wavered ahead of a critical OPEC+ decision on gradually reversing production cuts. West Texas Intermediate crude fell as much as 1.4%, to $44.66 per barrel, before paring losses. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, slid 1.2%, to $47.68 per barrel, before similarly erasing the drop.
Now read more markets coverage from Markets Insider and Business Insider:
The creator of a new volatility index for the Nasdaq 100 shares how investors can protect portfolios loaded with tech names – and explains why he thinks it’s superior to the VIX
Value and growth stocks can climb together in 2021 as investors split focus between vaccine rollouts and virus scarring, top Wall Street strategist says
‘Big Short’ investor Michael Burry reveals he’s short Tesla, tells Elon Musk to issue more stock at its ‘ridiculous price’
Read the original article on Business Insider
Article Source and Credit feedproxy.google.com http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/~3/KfEfQFRCA_k/stock-market-news-today-near-records-weekly-jobless-claims-stimulus-2020-12 Buy Tickets for every event – Sports, Concerts, Festivals and more buytickets.com