Weaker Data Takes Toll On Markets Today

Weaker Data Takes Toll On Markets Today

Underwhelming economic data prompted US stock futures to hover on Thursday, one day after one stock index endured its biggest losses in about 21 days.  

Weaker Data Takes Toll On Markets Today
Weaker Data Takes Toll On Markets Today

Two metrics – both retail sales and jobless insurance applications – came in less than forecast. But, nonetheless, the recovery of the world's largest economy continued gaining steam as economists said the economy is marching forward in its recovery. Just after 10 a.m. in New York, the Nasdaq dipped 0.25%, a fall of 10.7 points to 4,321.57; the S&P 500 edged down 0.19%, a fall of 3.71 points to 1,940.34; and the Dow dipped 0.21%, a drop of 35.61 points to 16,808.27.

Retail sales climbed 0.3% last month, about half the forecast growth rate. Claims for unemployment insurance climbed earlier this month, another factor that came as a surprise. The S&P has endured two days of losses, including Wednesday slippage that marks the index' biggest one day loss since late May.

Bloomberg reports jobless claims checked in at 317,000 last week, surging past the median projection of economists polled by the news service. While those forecasts checked in at 310,000, thus far this year applications have amounted to 324,000.

European stocks push higher
Shifting east, European stocks were on the rise on Thursday, according to MarketWatch. While the Stoxx Europe 600 rose on Thursday, the metric endured some challenges during the day prior, drawing down after notching its highest level since early 2008. Economic data noted industrial production in the euro zone climbed in April, demonstrating the region saw faster development and growth during the early component of the second quarter of the year.

As part of the drive to encourage a growth uptick, the European Central Bank implemented steps designed to encourage growth and economic activity while also spurring inflation. France, the host of the second-largest economy in the euro zone, released data noting consumer prices remained even last month, showing minimal advancement from the month prior.

Home prices in the UK, considered the third-largest economy in Europe, ticked up last month, according to data released by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Despite the gains, additional data indicated demand is poised to slow in a nation whose central bank officials have expressed concerns about the housing market.

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