The Labor Department says applications for unemployment benefits fell 4,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 294,000.
Stocks continue to retreat from their recent record highs as the price of oil continues to plunge. The S&P 500 index dropped nearly 18 points to 2,002.61 today, while the Dow closed down 130, finishing at 17,371.64. The Nasdaq composite lost close to 60 points to 4,592.74.
Oil prices plunged deeper today, and that has driven stocks sharply lower.
Stocks are starting off the New Year with mixed results.
International stock markets started 2015 on a positive note today though some Asian markets including Japan remained closed for holidays.
A monthly report shows an improved economic outlook over the next three to six months for nine Midwestern and Plains states.
An unprecedented drop in gas prices is leading to happy customers at the pump. However, how much you pay also has other effects.
Stocks are drifting lower in light New Year's Eve trading on Wall Street, but the market remains on pace for its sixth consecutive year of gains.
Lingering concerns about the political future of Greece pushed U.S. and global stock markets modestly lower today.
European stock markets are mixed in early trading while Asian shares closed mostly higher today after the Dow Jones industrial average surpassed 18,000 to hit a new high.
In a year full of market milestones, Wall Street crushed a couple more today, lifting the Dow Jones industrial average past the 18,000-point mark for the first time and delivering the Standard & Poor's 500 index its second record-high close in two days.
The Dow has broken through the 18,000 level and remains there this afternoon. Among the economic data encouraging investors is the government's latest estimate of third quarter growth.
Falling oil prices pushed U.S. stocks down broadly today, extending losses into a second week. European stocks also fell, and the Russian ruble plunged to a record low against the dollar as the continuing collapse in the price of oil reverberated through global financial markets.
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