Stocks open higher despite an unpleasant surprise on growth

The U.S. stock market opened in modest gain Thursday, boosted by lower jobless claims in the U.S., partially offset by an unpleasant surprise on growth: Dow Jones advanced 0.18% and Nasdaq climbed 0.39 %.

Around 9:40 am EDT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 21.27 points to 12,129.01 points in the Nasdaq, dominated by technology, from 10.01 points to 2587.98 points.

The broader index Standard & Poor’s 500 index progressed by 0.25% (3.17 points) to 1,246.89 points.

Wednesday, Wall Street had ended without management, investors wondering about the impact of massive loans from the European Central Bank to banks on the continent. The Dow Jones had eaten 0.03% and the S & P 500 0.19% but the Nasdaq had lost 0.99%.

“The market, after showing resistance (Wednesday), is geared up slightly, while a further decline in jobless claims boosted confidence,” explained Charles Schwab analysts.

But “the unexpected downward revision of growth (…) tempers optimism of the market,” they said. Growth in the third quarter was revised down to 1.8% annualized rate, a low level for the United States.

Applications for unemployment benefits fell last week to their lowest level since April 2008, to 364,000, while analysts expected them to go back.

Patrick O’Hare, Briefing.com financial site, the latter statistic “should be as important as it gives an indication of the future, while the revision of GDP for a period behind us.”

The bond market rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury shrank to 1.937% against 1.967% Wednesday, and the 30-year 2.968% 3.001% against the previous day.

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