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US stocks bounce back ahead of economic readings on home sales, manufacturing

US stocks bounce back ahead of economic readings on home sales, manufacturing

Stocks rebounded in early trading Friday as investors awaited data on home sales and manufacturing to help determine how Wall Street will cap a fractious year.
The volatility that marked the second half of 2007 showed itself again Thursday after the assassination of Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto and a weak reading on big-ticket manufactured items. The major indexes each lost more than 1 percent, including the Dow Jones industrial average, which dropped nearly 200 points.
While a rebound might not be unexpected after a sharp, single-session pullback, economic data arriving later Friday morning will likely determine whether any recovery holds.
The Commerce Department is expected to weigh in at 10 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT) with a report on new home sales for November; Wall Street expects the reading to be weak, as was the case for October.
Investors are also awaiting release of the Chicago purchasing managers index of December manufacturing activity in the Midwest, considered a precursor of the national Institute for Supply Management report being released next Wednesday.
The mix of economic data are important as Wall Street is eager to determine the degree to which weakness in the housing and financial sectors is tugging at the overall economy and whether the economy is likely to tip into recession.
In the first hour of trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 72.67, or 0.54 percent, to 13,432.28.
Broader stock indicators also rose. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 9.73, or 0.66 percent, to 1,486.00, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 14.47, or 0.54 percent, to 2,691.26.
Friday is Wall Street's second-to-last trading session of the year.
Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which moves opposite its price, fell to 4.12 percent from 4.19 percent late Thursday. The dollar was mixed against other major currencies, while gold prices rose.
Light, sweet crude rose 94 cents to $97.56 per barrel in electronic trading ahead of the start of floor trading at the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In corporate news, Checkpoint Systems Inc. rose $4.17, or 18.4 percent, to $26.88 after the company late Thursday named a new chief executive. Analysts praised the latest change at the maker of security devices as likely to bring about stronger sales and earnings.
Genesco Inc. jumped $4.35, or 13.2 percent, to $37.41 after a judge ruled The Finish Line Inc. cannot back out of its $1.5 billion purchase of Genesco. Finish Line fell 50 cents, or 16.4 percent, to $2.55.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by about 3 to 1 on the New York Stock Exchange, where volume came to 64.1 million shares.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies rose 7.85, or 1.01 percent, to 781.36.


Updated : 2021-07-30 18:00 GMT+08:00