The greenback snapped its current losing streak rising against several of the majors during the session on optimistic reports this morning. According to the latest weekly Labor Department report, initial jobless claims dipped 10,000 to 303,000, rising below the consensus figure of 308,000. Dollar bullish, the weekly data is suggesting suffice momentum in the sector carried on climbing wage earnings. The figure additionally contributes to further speculation of higher interest rates following contrarian suggestions made by the Federal Reserve earlier in the week. However, countering the positive weekly employment survey, leading economic indicators in the world’s largest economy pulled back slightly by 0.1 percent according to the Conference Board. Although negative, the decline looks to have simply followed four consecutive months of increases and been widely anticipated by the market in the month. Rising against the euro and sterling, the greenback now trades at 1.2774 against the Swiss franc compared to yesterday’s close of 1.2666.
Stocks were relatively mixed on conflicting earnings reports released by bellwether companies. Pushing the benchmark Dow Jones higher were uplifted earnings from companies General Motors and Merck & Co. For the quarter, General Motors reported another consecutive quarter of loss of $323 million. However, the report revealed that the company witnessed revenues that rose 14 percent to a record $52.2 billion compared to $45.8 billion last year. The news underpinned the share price, rising 9.5 percent to $22.52. Subsequently, Merck & Co. reported profits that increased on higher interest income and revenues from its cholesterol drug sales. Merck stock rose 69 cents to $35.09. Comparably, leading the Nasdaq lower was a disappointing release by Ebay. The online auctioneer reported earnings that were in line, however, disappointed shareholders as expectations were set higher for the annualized outlook. Shares of eBay fell $3.33 to $37.02. As a result, the Dow Jones rose on the day, higher by 72.36 points to 11,351.13 while the broader S&P 500 climbed 1.55 points to 1,311.48.
Bonds were relatively flat on the session with the 10-year benchmark note yielding 5.03 percent as gold and other commodity prices retreated from yesterday’s gains.