U.S. Stocks Regaining Ground As Traders Hunt For Bargains
(RTTNews) - Stocks have moved mostly higher in morning trading on Thursday, regaining ground after moving notably lower over the two previous sessions. The Dow is bouncing off its lowest closing level in well over three months.
Currently, the major averages are hovering firmly in positive territory. The Dow is up 62.50 points or 0.3 percent at 25,188.91, the Nasdaq is up 37.00 points or 0.5 percent at 7,584.31 and the S&P 500 is up 12.02 points or 0.4 percent at 2,795.04.
The rebound on Wall Street comes as some traders are bargain hunting, picking up stocks at reduced levels following recent weakness.
A rebound by treasury yields has also contributed to the upward move, with the yield on the benchmark ten-year note bouncing off its lowest levels since September of 2017.
The recent decline by treasury yields has led to concerns about the outlook for the economy and the possibility of a recession.
Buying interest remains somewhat subdued, however, as traders seem reluctant to get back into the markets amid lingering concerns about the U.S.-China trade dispute.
Amid a continued escalation of the rhetoric, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Hanhui accused the U.S. of "economic terrorism" by raising tariffs on Chinese goods.
"We oppose a trade war but are not afraid of a trade war," Zhang said. "This kind of deliberately provoking trade disputes is naked economic terrorism, economic homicide, economic bullying,"
On the U.S. economic front, the Labor Department released a report showing a modest uptick in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended May 25th.
The report said initial jobless claims edged up to 215,000, an increase of 3,000 from the previous week's revised level of 212,000.
A separate report from the Commerce Department showed U.S. economic growth in the first quarter accelerated by slightly less than initially estimated.
The Commerce Department said real gross domestic product surged up by 3.1 percent in the first quarter, reflecting a slight downward from revision from the previously reported 3.2 percent jump.
The downwardly revised increase in GDP, which matched economist estimates, still represented a notable acceleration from the 2.2 percent growth seen in the fourth quarter of 2018.
Meanwhile, the National Association of Realtors released a report showing pending home sales unexpectedly pulled back in the month of April.
NAR said its pending home sales index tumbled by 1.5 percent to 104.3 in April after surging up by 3.9 percent to an upwardly revised 105.9 in March.
The pullback came as a surprise to economists, who had expected pending home sales to climb by 0.9 percent compared to the 3.8 percent jump originally reported for the previous month.
Semiconductor stocks have shown a significant move to the upside in morning trading, driving the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index up by 1.3 percent.
Tobacco, computer hardware, and retail stocks are also seeing notable strength on the day, moving higher along with most of the other major sectors.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Thursday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index fell by 0.3 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index slid by 0.4 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets have moved to the upside. While the French CAC 40 Index has risen by 0.5 percent, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index and the German DAX Index are both up by 0.6 percent.
In the bond market, treasuries are giving back ground after moving notably higher over the past several sessions. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by 3.3 basis points at 2.269 percent.