Investing.com - U.S. stocks opened steady on Thursday, after the
release of upbeat U.S. economic reports as uncertainty over whether
central banks will roll back stimulus continued to rattle global
During early U.S. trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average eased
0.06%, the S&P 500 index dipped 0.05%, while the Nasdaq
Composite index slipped 0.10%.
The Department of Labor said the number of people who filed for
unemployment assistance in the U.S. last week fell by 12,000 to
334,000, compared to expectations for a decline of 1,000 to
Separately, the Commerce Department said retail sales rose 0.6% in
May, led higher by increased automobile purchases, beating forecast
for a 0.4% increase.
Core retail sales, which exclude auto sales, were up 0.3%, in line
But investors remained cautious as the prospect of an end to
central bank stimulus fuelled a broad based sell-off in risk
In addition, the World Bank earlier said in a report that the
global economy will expand 2.2% this year, less than a January
forecast for 2.4% growth and slower than last year's 2.3%.
In the tech sector, Hewlett-Packard retreated 0.84% after CEO Meg
Whitman on Wednesday said that revenue growth is "still possible"
for the computer maker in its fiscal year 2014.
Separately, Apple shares edged down 0.05%, amid reports the tech
giant may be launching iPhones with bigger screens, cheaper models,
and in a range of colors over the next year.
Adding to losses, DuPont slid 0.39% after saying it expects to see
full-year earnings at the lower end of its previously issued
On the upside, Clearwire climbed 0.46% after the company's board
recommended that shareholders accept an offer of USD4.40 a share
from Dish Network, shunning a lower bid from its majority owner
Also in company news, Safeway, the second-largest U.S.
grocery-store chain agreed to sell its Canadian stores to Empire's
Sobeys Inc. unit for about USD5.7 billion in cash, sending shares
Across the Atlantic, European stock markets were lower. The EURO
STOXX 50 dropped 0.51%, France's CAC 40 slipped 0.22%, Germany's
DAX tumbled 0.94%, while Britain's FTSE 100 slid 0.30%.
During the Asian trading session, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index
plunged 2.19%, while Japan's Nikkei 225 Index dove 6.35%.
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