Market Watch: Investors Eye Key Data


U.S. stocks moved up on Thursday, the last day of a shortened—but busy—trading week on Wall Street.

The Dow continued its retreat Wednesday, effectively wiping out all of the gains from Monday’s 263-point rally. A 200-point drop on Tuesday did most of the damage and pushed the leading index back into the red for 2015. A 77-point drop yesterday took care of the rest.

A slew of data is expected over the next two days that could go a long way towards determining market direction for the second quarter. February’s trade deficit came in small than expected at $35.4 billion, while weekly jobless claims were lower at 268,000. Tomorrow brings the week’s data highlight—the monthly jobs report.

Some analysts say another strong jobs report could push the Federal Reserve closer to an interest rate hike—a troubling prospect for the markets.

Here are the final numbers from Thursday on Wall Street:

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 17,763.24 (+65.06)

NASDAQ: 4,886.94 (+6.71) 

S&P 500: 2,066.95 (+7.26)


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