After five days of declines, the stock markets in the United States went up on the new job market data released by the Department of Labor. Investors also welcome the statement of some Republicans that a government shutdown will not happen.

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The Department of Labor reported that the number of Americans who applied for unemployment benefits declined by 5,000 to 305,000 (seasonally adjusted) last week, the second lowest level over the past six years.

Commenting on the job market data, Joseph LaVorgna, chief U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank AG (ETR:DBK) (FRA:DBK) (NYSE:DB) said, “Based on these figures, the labor market is getting better, albeit at a modest pace.”

With regard to the ongoing discussion in Congress regarding the federal budget and debt ceiling, House Speaker John Boehner encouraged his fellow Republicans to be more flexible to keep the government running. Republican Congressman Pete Sessions is optimistic that a government default or shutdown will not occur.

House Republicans will propose a bill seeking to raise the debt ceiling, however, it will include a provision that will delay the implementation of ObamaCare.

Meanwhile, the Department of Commerce reported that the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) grew faster in the second quarter than the previous three months at an annualized rate of 2.5 percent.

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA)- 15,321.68 (+0.32%)
  • S&P 500- 1,697.80 (+0.30%)
  • NASDAQ- 3,785.52 (+0.65%)
  • Russell 2000- 1,075.10 (+0.15%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 2, 927.99 (+0.15%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 6,565.59 (+0.21%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 8,664.10 (+0.02%)

Asia Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 14, 799.12 (+1.22%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 23,125.03 (-0.36%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 2, 384.44 (-1.84%)

Stocks In Focus

The shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ:BBBY) surged 7% to as much as $78.88 per share on Thursday Morning. The stock was driven upwards by its second quarter earnings that beat consensus estimates. The company posted $1.16 earnings per share, up by 18% and $2.82 billion revenue, an increase of 9%. The stock ended the trading day with more than a 4% gain.

eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY) gained more than 4% to as much $56.90 per share after announcing its agreement to acquire payment platform, Braintree for $800 million to expand PayPal, its mobile transaction-business.

The stock value of Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:HTZ) fell by over 16% to $21.49 per share after the company reduced its FY13 earnings and revenue guidance. Hertz cut its earnings forecast to $1.68 from 1.78 per share, compared with the consensus estimate of analysts at $1.89 per share. The company estimated that its revenue would be around $10.8 billion to $10.9 billion, lower than its previous estimate at $10.85 billion to $10.95 billion.

Meanwhile, The stock price of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE:JCP) fluctuated from $9.53 to $11.21 per share today. The stock plummeted by 15% yesterday due to concerns that the company is burning cash faster and it is on the edge of facing a liquidity problem. J.C. Penney is raising an additional $1 billion cash as it continues to turn around its business. The stock regained some of its value today mainly because the company issued a press statement indicating that its sales are growing, and it is pleased with the progress of its turnaround efforts. The stock was up by more than 2% today.