) -- Durable goods orders ticked up in December, though at a far weaker pace than many had anticipated.
The Commerce Department said orders increased by 0.3%, as manufacturers closed out a downbeat year that saw orders tumble a record 20.2% in 2009. Still, analysts were expecting a much more robust 2% rise during the month.
The department also revised November orders to show a 0.4% decline after originally reporting a 0.7% slide.
But after excluding the wild swings associated with the transportation sector, which fell 2%, orders for durable goods showed a 0.9% upswing in December after gaining 2.1% in November. The December sum surpassed forecasts calling for a 0.5% jump.
Dow Jones Industrial Average
opened higher Thursday, adding 0.1% to 10,250. On Wednesday,
worst of the recession may be behind them after the company reported earnings well beyond expectations.
--Written by Sung Moss in New York