NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The major U.S. stock averages were mostly lower Thursday after the latest U.S. labor market data and as investors awaited more information from the European Central Bank meeting.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down 7 points, or 2.49 points below fair value, at 13,017. Futures for the S&P 500 were down 0.60 points, or 0.02 points above fair value, at 1407. Futures for the Nasdaq were down 5 points, or 2.39 points below fair value, at 2632.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 rose on Wednesday, rebounding after President Barack Obama spoke to top business leaders and made a YouTube push to pass his budget proposal.
In the afternoon Wednesday, news that a group of Republicans were supporting the bi-partisan call to break the gridlock over the "fiscal cliff" talks boosted sentiment.A big drop in Apple (AAPL) shares dragged down the Nasdaq on Wednesday. The European Central Bank on Thursday kept its benchmark rate unchanged at a record low of 0.75%. The meeting was to be followed by a press conference. President Mario Draghi is likely to state again that the ECB is ready to put its bond purchase plan into action, according to Ben May, an economist at Capital Economics. At the same time, "he will doubtless also stress that it is up to euro-zone governments to solve the debt crisis and he is unlikely to offer much hope of further imminent policy support for the wider economy," said May. The Bank of England also left its interest rate the unchanged Thursday at a record low of 0.5% and kept its economic stimulus program at 375 billion pounds. The FTSE 100 in London was rising 0.33% Thursday, while the DAX in Germany was gaining 0.94%. The Asian markets finished mixed. Japan's Nikkei average finished up 0.81% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index closed off by 0.09% as investors began to shift their attention away from China's infrastructure spending plans to the ongoing uncertainties relating to the "fiscal cliff" and eurozone. The Labor Department said that initial jobless claims for the week ended Dec. 1 fell 25,000 to 370,000, coming in lower than the expected 380,000. The prior week's claims were upwardly revised to 395,000. "Jobless claims fell 25,000 through last Saturday and by more than expected driving the level of claims back down to 370,000 as the impact of Hurricane Sandy dissipates," said Andrew Wilkinson, chief economic strategist at Miller Tabak. The four-week claims average rose to 408,000 from 405,750. Continuing claims for the week ended Nov. 24 fell by 100,000 to 3.21 million; economists were expecting 3.275 million. Meanwhile, the Challenger job cut report registered a 34.4% rise in job cuts in November, after being up 11.6% the prior month. The jobs data arrives ahead of Friday's big November nonfarm payrolls report, which Julia Coronado, chief economist at BNP Paribas' global market economics, expects to show another reversal in trends with an extremely subdued ... gain after a more resilient string of readings averaging 170,000 over the past three months. "This is entirely attributable to disruptions associated with Hurricane Sandy," said Coronado. Gold for February delivery was rising $1.60 at $1,695.40 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, while January crude oil contracts were up 23 cents at $88.21 a barrel. The benchmark 10-year Treasury was unchanged, with the yield at 1.591%. The dollar was down 0.01%, according to the
>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Andrea Tse. Follow @Commodity_Bull
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV