Faintly upbeat news from the Labor and Commerce departments weren’t enough to lift the U.S. stock market’s mood on Thursday, June 24, as mixed jobs and manufacturing data left investors wondering where the economy is headed.
Initial claims for jobless benefits fell by 19,000 to 457,000 for the week ended June 19 from the previous week’s revised figure of 476,000, the Labor Department said in its weekly report. Economists had expected more people to file for unemployment, in the range of 460,000 to 470,000 initial claims, but they continue to worry about lackluster job growth.
Excluding transportation, new orders for durable goods in May increased 0.9%, with gains in metals, machinery, and computers, the Commerce Department reported. But overall new orders decreased 1.1%, following five consecutive monthly increases. The decline was largely due to an expected drop-off in commercial aircraft orders.
At mid-afternoon, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 115.56 points, or 1.12%, to a reading of 10,183.