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US open: S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite hit new record highs in early trading

By Iain Gilbert

Date: Thursday 24 Jun 2021

US open: S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite hit new record highs in early trading

(Sharecast News) - Wall Street stocks were in the green early on Thursday, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite surpassing their respective record highs during early trading.
As of 1525 BST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.80% at 34,145.02, while the S&P 500 was 0.62% firmer at 4,268.0 and the Nasdaq Composite came out the gate 0.84% stronger at 14,392.04.

The Dow opened 270.78 points higher on Thursday, erasing losses recorded in the previous session.

Thursday's main focus was this week's jobless claims data from the Labor Department, which revealed that initial jobless claims came to 411,000 in the week ended 19 June, a modest decline from the previous week's print of 418,000 that came short of estimates for a reading of 380,000.

Continuing claims decreased by 144,000 to 3.39m, while the four-week moving average for initial claims, which aims to smooth out the fluctuations in the data from one week to the next, increased by 1,500 to 397,750.

Also on investors' minds will be infrastructure package negotiations in Washington, with a bipartisan group of Senators that claim to have made progress on a plan set to meet with President Joe Biden at the White House, as will the Federal Reserve's yearly bank stress test results, scheduled for release at 2130 BST.

On the macro front, orders in the US for goods made to last more than three years continued growing at a steady clip last month, helped by strong demand from the transportation sector. According to the Census Bureau, total durable goods orders jumped at a month-on-month pace of 2.3% in May to reach $253.3bn. Economists had pencilled-in an increase of 3.0%.

Elsewhere, the US economy grew at a 6.4% clip over the first three months of 2021, leading economists to expect this year to be the strongest year for the economy in growth. According to the Commerce Department, growth in US gross domestic product was unchanged from two previous estimates but economists reckon GDP growth will accelerate in the April-June quarter to an annual rate of 10% or better and around 7% for the year as a whole.

In the corporate space, Nike and FedEx will both report quarterly earnings throughout the course of the day.

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