US stocks decline amid tech-sector weakness and unexpected jump in jobless claims

SourceBusiness Insider
SectorFinancial Markets
CountryMiddle east

US equities fell on Thursday following a surprise jump in weekly jobless claims and declining tech giants. The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits totaled an unadjusted 861,000 last week, the Labor Department said Thursday morning. The reading lands handily above the 773,000 claims expected by economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The sum is also the highest since mid-January. Continuing claims, which track Americans receiving unemployment benefits, declined slightly to 4.5 million for the week that ended February 6. Economists projected a larger decline to 4.4 million.

The data suggests that, while some pockets of the economy rebound, the labor market's recovery continues to hit snags. Here's where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Thursday: Tech giants weighed on major indexes and led the Nasdaq composite to underperform. Apple, Netflix, and Microsoft all declined as investors move cash from momentum favorites to recovery plays. The decline follows a mixed session on Wednesday that pushed the Dow to record highs. more...