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Current Futures: Dow +40.00, S&P +9.10, NASDAQ +4.50

The U.S. equity market is currently heading higher, after a release showed that retail sales increased more than expected in May. Further positive news came from the unemployment claims, which declined for a fifth month in a row.

The S&P 500 is posting gains after two very important releases for the U.S. economy printed better than expected numbers on Thursday morning. Retail sales rose for the first time in three months in May, but most of the gains came from car and gas sales. TheLFB-Forex.com Trade Team notes that the rise observed in car sales seems rather to be a short-term trend, as some consumers are looking for bargain deals. However, the advance seen in gas sales will probably continue in the coming months, as the strong gains from the crude oil’s market (approximately 110% since the low set in March) will be slowly absorbed into the retail gas prices. 

A different report showed that business inventories dropped for the eight month in a row, suggesting that business owners continue to cut back their supply. In the first quarter, business inventories had a strong drag on the GDP number, but many have said that this was practically the bottom. However, TheLFB-Forex.com Trade Team commented that in the second quarter, business inventories will most likely continue to have a negative drag on the quarterly read.

Following this morning’s news releases, most sectors in the U.S. market headed higher. The only exceptions were the real estate and the consumer discretionary sectors. On the other side, utilities, energy and the materials sector gained more than 2% during Thursday’s trading session. In the S&P 500, 5 out of the 6 top gainers where from the financial sector, posting gains bigger than 6%.

Overnight, the Japanese Nikkei lost 10.16 points (0.10%) to 9,981.33. The Australian S&P/Asx gained 22.80 points (0.57%) to 4,047.20. The U.K. Ftse rose 25.12 points (0.57%) to 4,461.87, while the German Dax added 56.08 points (1.11%) to 5,107.26. The S&P 500 index gained 8.39 points (0.89%) to 947.54, while the Dow Jones index added 64.02 (0.73%) to 8,803.04.

Crude oil for July delivery was recently trading at $72.52 per barrel, higher by $1.20.

Gold for July delivery was recently trading higher by $2.30 to $957.10.

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