Here Are 3 Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up slightly Thursday. Earlier in the session the blue-chip index had fallen on a report saying President Donald Trump was in no rush to complete a trade pact with China, but Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said discussions with China were progressing quickly.
  • Social media company Snap Inc. (SNAP - Get Report) climbed after longtime BTIG bear Richard Greenfield upgraded the stock to buy from neutral due to expectations of rising advertising revenue. Shares ended up 12.2%.
  • Dollar General (DG - Get Report) posted weaker-than-expected fourth quarter earnings and issued full-year profit guidance for 2019 that also fell shy of forecasts. Shares tumbled 7.5%.

Wall Street Overview

Stocks ended mixed Thursday as the three major stock indexes reacted to reports on stalled trade talks with China. President Trump had said he was no rush to complete a trade pact with China, but on Thursday both he and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that discussions with China to end the months-long trade war are progressing quickly.

Trump said he could not say whether a final deal would be reached.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 7.05, or 0.03%, at 25,709, the S&P 500 was down 0.09% and the Nasdaq fell 0.16%.

Prices of imported goods in the U.S. rose more than expected in February, driven by a jump in fuel costs. Import prices rose 0.6%, after falling 0.5% a month earlier, the Labor Department said. Economists had expected a 0.3% increase. In addition, initial  claims for state unemployment benefits rose 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 229,000 for the week ended March 9. Economists had forecast claims rising to 225,000. The four-week moving average of initial claims slipped 2,500 to 223,750 last week.

"Today's import price number is a little higher than expected, which tells you that inflation is holding in there steady and probably isn't at any risk of moving materially higher from here," said Charlie Ripley, senior investment strategist for Allianz Investment Management. "I think this dovetails into the (Federal Reserve's) message of being patient and this provides them a little more opportunity to step back and really assess how markets are performing and how the data's coming in and make decisions down the road."
 
"The slight tick up in jobless claims to 229,000 is nothing to get overly worried about as the U.S. jobs market is very strong," said David Madden, a market analyst at CMC Markets UK. "The firmer import prices could be a sign that tariffs from Chinese goods are hurting U.S. consumers, because we know that CPI and PPI levels are not causing the bump up in prices."
 
New home sales fell 6.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 607,000 units, the Commerce Department said. December's sales pace was revised higher to 652,000 units from the previously reported 621,000 units. Economists had called for new home sales to slip 0.6% to a pace of 620,000 units in January.
 
Social media company Snap Inc. ( SNAP - Get Report) climbed after longtime BTIG bear Richard Greenfield upgraded the stock to buy from neutral due to expectations of rising advertising revenue. Shares ended up 12.2% at $11.28.
 
General Electric ( GE - Get Report) issued fresh 2019 earnings guidance Thursday that missed analysts' forecasts.  The industrial conglomerate confirmed it will spend as much as $2 billion in cash in its industrial division. Shares ended up 2.8% to $10.30.
 
Boeing ( BA - Get Report) continued its decline in the wake of a fatal air crash that resulted in the global grounding of its MAX 8 and MAX 9 jets. Trump ordered the immediate grounding of the planes following similar decisions from authorities around the world in the wake of Sunday's deadly crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302 -- the second fatal crash of a 737 MAX in six months. Shares ended down 1% to $373.21.
 
Federal prosecutors are conducting a criminal investigation into data deals Facebook ( FB - Get Report)  struck with some of the world's largest technology companies, The New York Times reported. Shares were down 1.49% to $170.78.
 
Dollar General  ( DG - Get Report) posted weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings and issued full-year profit guidance for 2019 that also fell shy of forecasts. Shares ended down 7.5% to $111.61.
 
 
Tesla ( TSLA - Get Report) is scheduled Thursday to unveil the Model Y, the electric carmaker's compact SUV, at 11 p.m. ET at its design studio in Los Angeles. Shares ended up 1% to $289.96.
 
Facebook is a holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club . Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells FB? Learn more now.
 
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