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US STOCKS-Wall St ticks up as U.S. data offset global growth worries
November 20, 2014 / 4:07 PM / 3 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St ticks up as U.S. data offset global growth worries

* Best Buy jumps after earnings beat; Keurig tumbles

* GoPro falls after pricing follow-on shares at discount

* Indexes: Dow flat, S&P up 0.1 pct, Nasdaq up 0.4 pct (Updates to morning trading)

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, Nov 20 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks climbed on Thursday as strong U.S. data offset concerns over a slowdown in the euro zone and a loss of momentum in Chinese factories.

Stock indexes rose as data showed factory activity in the U.S. mid-Atlantic region grew at its fastest pace in two decades, U.S. home resales jumped to their highest in more than a year in October, and a gauge of future U.S. economic activity gained more than expected last month.

Separate data showed U.S. consumer prices were unexpectedly flat in October though underlying inflation pressures were rising, while new claims for unemployment benefits fell less than expected last week but showed the labor market was improving.

The upbeat numbers were the main reason for the market to turn higher, analysts said.

The Philly Fed area “isn’t a hub of industrial activity any more but it’s still important and it’s strong,” said Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group.

She said the run-up in activity “probably has something to do with infrastructure,” adding strong home sales data also encouraged stock buyers.

At 10:51 a.m. EST (1551 GMT), the Dow Jones industrial average fell 3.93 points, or 0.02 percent, to 17,681.8, the S&P 500 gained 2.6 points, or 0.13 percent, to 2,051.32 and the Nasdaq Composite added 17.90 points, or 0.38 percent, to 4,693.61

Futures were lower for much of the morning after data showed euro zone business growth was slower than expected this month and new orders fell for the first time in more than a year, while output in China’s factory sector contracted for the first time in six months.

GoPro shares fell 6.8 percent to $73.70 after a follow-on-offering of 10.4 million shares priced at $75 per share, a 5.2 percent discount to Wednesday’s $79.09 close.

Best Buy added 8 percent to $38.40 as the largest percentage gainer on the S&P 500 after reporting a better-than-expected profit as cost cutting paid off and revenue increased.

Shares of Alibaba added 2.8 percent to $111.87 after founder Jack Ma said the firm will set up an international version of its e-commerce marketplace Taobao for shoppers worldwide.

Among the top decliners was Keurig Green Mountain, down 7.7 percent to $142.10 the day after it forecast a fiscal first-quarter profit below analysts’ estimates.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by 1,857 to 1,043, for a 1.78-to-1 ratio on the upside; on the Nasdaq, 1,604 issues rose and 916 fell for a 1.75-to-1 ratio favoring advancers.

The benchmark S&P 500 index was posting 26 new 52-week highs and 2 new lows; the Nasdaq Composite was recording 32 new highs and 35 new lows.

Editing by Bernadette Baum

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