RTTNews - US stocks were looking to get back on the winning track Thursday morning, but a modicum of anxiety remained over concerns that green shoots on the economic landscape may prove to be weeds.
Thursday is shaping up to be a busy day on both the corporate and economic fronts. As of 6:15 am ET, the Dow Futures were up 50 points, the NASDAQ Futures were up 5 points, and the S&P Futures were up 6 points.
Stocks snapped a four-day winning streak on Wednesday, as traders did some profit taking in reaction to some discouraging economic data.
The Dow closed down 65.63 points or 0.8 percent at 8,675.24, the NASDAQ closed down 10.88 points or 0.6 percent at 1,825.92, and the S&P 500 fell 12.98 points or 1.4 percent to 931.76.
Thursday's trading is likely to be influenced by a key prelude to Friday's monthly jobs report. Traders will look to initial jobless claims figures for the week ended May 30th from the Labor Department. The figure is expected to improve to 620,000 first time claims compared to last week's figure of 623,000.
In a separate report, the Labor Department will reveal revised productivity and labor cost figures for the first quarter of 2009. Both reports will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
Traders will also look to more comments from Fed Chief Ben Bernanke, who is set to remark on financial markets and monetary policy in the nation's capital at 8:45 a.m. ET.
Retail giant Wal-Mart (WMT) revealed Thursday that it will create more than 22,000 jobs in 2009 to staff new or expanded stores in the United States, as announced in October 2008. The Bentonville, Arkansas-based company had announced, last October, plans to open 142 to 157 new or expanded stores during fiscal 2010 in the United States.
Membership warehouses operator Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST) reported a 7% fall in its comparable sales for the four-week period ended May 31, 2009, with a 5% decline in net sales.
Ciena Corp. (CIEN), a provider of communications networking equipment, software, and services, is scheduled to report second-quarter earnings results before the market opens Thursday.
The consensus of nine analysts polled by Thomson Reuters is for the company to post a loss of $0.09 a share in the second quarter.
Asian stocks slumped on Thurday, while European shares were slightly stronger ahead of interest rate decisions from the European Central Bank and Bank of England.
The price of oil rebounded after a big drop in the previous session, rising back above $67 a barrel. The dollar drifted lower near 5-month lows versus the euro, but remained steady against the yen.
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