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David Becker

US stocks rebounded on Thursday led higher by the Nasdaq. Most sectors in the S&P 500 index were mixed, lied higher by Energy shares, while Utilities bucked the trend. Despite the news earlier in the week that Moderna saw 95% efficacy on its vaccine results, the news that New York City was closing its schools weighed on the broader markets. US Existing Home Sales unexpected rose. Lower mortgage rates continue to buoy the housing market. Jobless claims unexpectedly rose, breaking a trend of 4-consecutive weeks of lower numbers. Solid returns from Walmart and Target on Tuesday and Wednesday continued to lift the consumer staples sector. The dollar continued to fall, which helped multinational companies gain traction.

Existing Home Sales Unexpectedly Rise

US existing home sales increased for a fifth straight month in October. According to the National Association of Realtors’ existing home, sales increased by 4.3% to an annual rate of 6.85 million units last month. Data for September was revised up to a rate of 6.57 million units from the previously reported 6.54 million units. Expectations were for sales to fall by 1.2% to a rate of 6.45 million units in October.

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Jobless Claims Climb

Jobless claims rose to 742,000 for the week, according to the Labor Department more than the 710,000 estimates expected. The week-over-week increase was the first after four straight weeks of decline. The four-week moving average, decreased 13,750 to 742,00. Continuing claims, took another substantial drop, falling 429,000 to 6.37 million, a fresh pandemic-era low. The insured unemployment rate, which is a simple calculation of those getting benefits against the total labor force, also continued to decline, falling to 4.3%.

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