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U.S. stocks close mixed amid data
Last Updated: 2019-04-12 07:04 | Xinhua
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U.S. stocks ended mixed on Thursday, as investors digested a batch of latest economic data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average decreased 14.11 points, or 0.05 percent, to 26,143.05. The S&P 500 increased 0.11 points, or 0.0038 percent, to 2,888.32. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 16.88 points, or 0.21 percent, to 7,947.36.

Shares of JetBlue Airways rose over 0.9 percent, after the low-cost carrier announced Wednesday plans to provide service to London in 2021, a move to compete with large international airlines in busy cosmopolitan markets.

Six of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors traded higher around market close, with the industrials sector up nearly 0.9 percent, leading the winners.

As a majority companies are set to report earnings results for the first quarter this week, analysts expect S&P 500 first-quarter profits to have dropped 2.5 percent from a year ago, their first contraction since 2016, according to Reuters, fanning worries over U.S. economic growth.

On the economic front, the Producer Price Index for final demand rose 0.6 percent in March, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Thursday. Final demand prices edged up 0.1 percent in February and decreased 0.1 percent in January.

The increase came mainly as a surge in the cost of gasoline. For the 12 months ended in March, the final demand index increased 2.2 percent, the largest 12-month rise since December 2018.

U.S. jobless claims, or the number of people who applied for unemployment benefits, sharply declined by 8,000 to 196,000 in the week ending April 6, said the Department of Labor on Thursday.

This marks the lowest level for initial claims since Oct. 4, 1969, signaling a strong labor market that props up the U.S. economy.

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