- Dow Jones Industrial Index up 34.66 (+0.27%) to 12,943.36
- S&P 500 up 3.73 (+0.27%) to 1,376.51
- Nasdaq Composite Index up 23.30 (+0.79%) to 2,965.90
- FTSE 100 up 22.79 (+0.40%) to 5,708.56
- Nikkei 225 up 68.81 (+0.79%) to 8,795.55
- Hang Seng Index up 319.17 (+1.66%) to 19,559.05
- Shanghai China Composite Index up 15.74 (+0.73%) to 2,184.84
U.S. stocks closed just in the green Thursday as investors weighed mostly positive corporate earnings against disappointing economic data.
Optimism is growing over earnings season following the recent report of better-than-expected earnings from a few different companies. Today, the highlight was IBM (NYSE:IBM), which reported both strong quarterly results and boosted its outlook. The stock was the top percentage gainer and point contributor in the Dow today.
In terms of economic data, today's disappointments included The Philly Fed report, the Conference Board's leading indicators and the Labor Department's jobless claims.
Sales of existing homes declined sharply, down 5.4% in June to an annual rate of 4.37 million, marking the lowest level of the year. The previous level was 4.55 million, and consensus estimates had put the figure at 4.65 million (range 4.60 million to 4.73 million).
Initial jobless claims surged 36,000 to 386,000, down from a prior level of 350,000 and topping consensus estimates of 365,000 (range 360,000 to 375,000). One bright spot was that the four-week moving average declined, moving to 375,500 from 376,500.
Oil surged in today's afternoon session, rallying 3.1% to $92.66 a barrel -- its seventh straight session of gains -- over a spike in tensions between Iran and Israel following a fatal bus bombing in Bulgaria.
Gold climbed 0.6%, its first gain in the past three sessions, to settle at $1,580.40 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
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(-) DCIX, Prices Offering