Stocks in New York moved modestly lower at Thursday's open as investors took in
earnings and adjusted to jobless claims and a Jobs-less
Dow Jones Industrial Average
was sinking 79 points at 8120, and the
was losing 11 points at 831. The
was down 15 points at 1474.
reported better than expected profit for the recent quarter but still reported higher credit costs. CEO Jamie Dimon said higher losses are likely if the economy deteriorates further.
JPMorgan, the first big U.S. bank to air it earnings, will be followed by
The Labor Department said Thursday that
initial claims for unemployment benefits
increased 54,000 to 524,000 for the week ended January 10 on a seasonally adjusted basis. The jobless claims figure was greater than the consensus of 501,000.
The Labor Department also said the
producer price index
, which measures the costs of goods before they reach consumers, retracted 1.9% in December, following a 2.2% decline in November and a 2.8% drop in October on a seasonally adjusted basis. Economists had predicted a 2% decline.
In other data, RealtyTrac reported Thursday that more than 2.3 million homeowners in the U.S. faced
foreclosure proceedings in 2008
, an 81% increase from 2007, and more than 860,000 properties were actually repossessed by lenders, more than double the 2007 level.
Stocks in New York ended Wednesday's session with steep losses as the market absorbed a plethora of dismal data -- including weaker-than-expected retail figures for December -- and punished financials.
After Wednesday's market close, Apple said
will take a medical leave of absence until the end of June and Chief Operating Officer Tom Cook will be minding the iPhone and Macintosh maker's day-to-day operations in the interim.
Meanwhile, software giant
is reportedly considering significant layoffs. According to
The Wall Street Journal
, the job cuts that could be announced as early as next week.
Leading the losses this week, Citigroup is expected to post its fifth straight quarterly loss, and reports surfaced from earlier in the week suggest that Citi's brokerage venture with
would be the first in a series of steps to essentially
take apart Citi's financial supermarket model
Investors, skeptical about the banks ability to sustain itself, as a whole and without more government aid, sent shares down sharply. Late Wednesday,
The Wall Street Journal
reported that the U.S. government was close to extending billions in additional aid to
as it swallows the acquisition of Merrill Lynch.
In commodities, oil was falling $1.05 to $36.23 a barrel, while gold was rising $8.10 to $816.90 an ounce.
As stocks were declining, longer dated Treasuries moved higher. The 30-year note was down 2/32, yielding 2.2%, while the 10-year note was adding 9/32 to yield 2.9%.
The dollar was stronger against the euro, pound and yen.
Overseas, the FTSE in London and the DAX in Frankfurt were both edging lower Wednesday, Japan's Nikkei Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended with losses.
Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.