US stocks started strong on Thursday after data on initial jobless claims fell to another 15-year low.
Near 10:06 a.m. ET, the Dow was up 131 points, the S&P 500 was up 11 points, and the Nasdaq was up 28 points. On Wednesday, the three indexes closed little changed.
The Labour Department reported that initial claims fell by 1,000 to 264,000 last week, lower than the expectation for a tally of 273,000.
This pushed the 4-week average of claims to the lowest since April 2000.
In other data, producer prices fell 0.4% in April, below expectations for a 0.1% increase from the prior month. Prices fell 1.3% year-over-year.
Excluding food and energy, producer prices climbed 0.8% year-over-year, and fell 0.2% month-over-month.
The Bureau of Labour Statistics said that over 30% of the decline in final demand goods prices in April can be attributed to a 4.7% drop in gasoline prices.
Kohl’s reported weaker-than-expected sales in the first quarter, and its stock fell more than 10% in early trading. This follows JCPenney’s weak quarterly sales disclosed on Wednesday.
And, Shake Shack shares rallied by up to 7% after a big beat on quarterly results reported Wednesday.
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