Stock Market Today: Futures Rise on Drop in Jobless Claims

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- U.S. stock futures were looking at a stronger start on Wall Street on Thursday after the S&P 500 finished above its 100-day moving average and appeared to clear one obstacle toward another near-term pop.

Futures got a further lift after the Labor Department said that initial jobless claims dropped by 14,000 to a lower-than-expected 289,000 last week and the four-week claims average fell to its lowest level since February 2006. The markets were also keeping an eye on the Federal Reserve's June consumer credit growth report at 3 p.m. EDT as well as the European Central Bank's post-meeting announcements on Thursday. The ECB , as expected, kept benchmark rates at record lows. Investors will be listening for insight from ECB Mario Draghi on how much the eurozone economy has been hurt by the West's strained relations with Russia over Ukraine.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were rising by 38 points, or 43.66 points above fair value, to 16,433, while S&P 500 futures were ahead by 7 points, or 6.81 points above fair value, to 1,921.75. Nasdaq futures were ticking up 11.5 points, or 12.73 points above fair value, to 3,880.3.

Earnings reports from CBS (CBS) and games maker Zynga (ZNGA) are expected after the market close as the earnings season begins to wind down. Zynga is expected by analysts on Thursday to report second-quarter break-even earnings on sales of $191.2 million. CBS is forecast to report second-quarter profit of 71 cents a share on revenue of $3.24 billion.

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