Stocks ended mixed Thursday after initial weekly jobless claims fell below 1 million for the first time since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and stimulus talks remained deadlocked.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 80 points, or 0.29%, to 27,896, the S&P 500 fell 0.2% while the Nasdaq Composite ended up 0.27%.
Earlier in the session, the S&P 500 traded above its all-time closing high of 3,386.15 set on Feb. 19.
The Labor Department reported Thursday that 963,000 Americans filed for first-time jobless benefits in the week ended Aug. 8, down from a revised 1.186 million claims the week earlier. Economists polled by FactSet had been expecting claims of 1.15 million.
“It remains to be seen if this is a trend or an outlier,” said Mike Loewengart, managing director of investment strategy at E-Trade Financial.
“It’s nothing short of impressive that the S&P flirts with record highs in just five months since the downturn, but it’s unknown if the disconnect between economic data and market activity will continue.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she received an “overture” from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to meet but turned down the offer since the White House hadn't budged from its stimulus demands.
Pelosi said Thursday she didn't know when the parties would talk again.
“I don’t know. When they come in with $2 trillion,” she said Thursday.
She said a day earlier that Democrats were “willing to come down $1 trillion if they will come up $1 trillion.”
Mnuchin said it was Pelosi who was "unwilling to meet to continue negotiations unless we agreed in advance to her proposal, costing at least $2 trillion."
"The Democrats have no interest in negotiating," he added.
The Senate broke for August recess Thursday afternoon, while the House had already left Washington.
Apple (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. (AAPL) Report finished up 1.8% Thursday on a Bloomberg report that the tech giant was preparing to roll out a new initiative called “Apple One,” a series of bundles that will let customers subscribe to several of its digital entertainment and productivity offerings at a packaged-up monthly price.