Stocks slip...1st quarter GDP upgraded slightly...Jobless claims tick up
NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are slipping in early trading on Wall Street as technology companies and big-dividend stocks dip. But banks are climbing after the Federal Reserve said that they can buy back more stock and raise their dividends. Bond yields also jumped. Walgreens rose and Rite Aid dropped after Walgreens ended its effort to buy Rite Aid.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy got off to a lackluster start during the first three months of 2017, but it had a bit more momentum than earlier estimates indicated. The Commerce Department says the gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic health, grew at an annual rate of 1.4 percent in the first quarter — better than a previous estimate of 1.2 percent. The upgrade reflects new-found strength in consumer spending and exports. It’s still weaker than the 2.1 percent growth in the fourth quarter.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Slightly more people sought U.S. unemployment benefits last week, but the number of applications remained at a historically low level. The Labor Department says weekly applications rose by 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 244,000. The less volatile four-week average fell 2,750 to 242,250.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Long-term mortgage rates have barely budged this week. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slipped to 3.88 percent, a new low for the year, down from 3.90 percent last week. The rate stood at 3.48 percent a year ago and averaged a record low 3.65 percent in 2016. The 15-year, fixed-rate home loan was unchanged from last week at 3.17 percent.
LONDON (AP) — Britain’s government has delayed Twenty-First Century Fox’s takeover bid of the Sky pay television and broadband network after media regulators expressed concern about the influence of Rupert Murdoch and his family. Murdoch’s media group is trying to buy the 61 percent of Sky it doesn’t already own, giving Twenty-First Century Fox easy access to Sky’s 22 million customers in the U.K., Ireland, Austria, Germany and Italy. Critics have charged that the $15.2 billion deal would give Murdoch too much power in U.K. media.