Wall Street ekes out gain as jobless claims fall

Stocks on Wall Street eked out small gains Thursday as improving labor market conditions spurred investors to buy economically sensitive industrial, financial, and materials stocks.

Data showing a sharp drop in new jobless claims last week fueled expectations that the economy will continue to recover. Another report showed business spending on equipment accelerated in April. That lifted Treasury yields and sent rate-sensitive tech stocks lower.

The Dow rose four-tenths of a percent; the broader indexes barely budged on the day.

Boeing was the biggest mover on the Dow. Shares of the aerospace giant climbed nearly 4% after its European archrival, Airbus, said it was considering almost doubling production of single-aisle jets by the middle of the decade. The aviation industry had suffered big losses last year as the health crisis slammed air travel, but this year has brought new orders. The Airbus news also sent shares of Boeing’s engine supplier, GE, up 7%.

Shares of Nvidia fell more than 1%. The chipmaker couldn’t say for certain how much of its recent revenue increase came from the volatile cryptocurrency-mining market.

Dollar Tree shares dropped nearly 8%. The discount store operator gave a tepid outlook for full-year profit, citing higher transportation costs.

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