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U.S. stocks were headed for a modest bounce Thursday, following an unexpected narrowing of the U.S. trade deficit.
Stocks have declined for six straight sessions as worries about a growth slowdown have dominated trading. Any early enthusiasm could be tempered by initial unemployment claims data, which remained above 400,000 for the ninth straight week.
Economy: The Labor Department released its weekly initial jobless claims, showing that 427,000 people applied for jobless benefits last week. That was slightly higher than expected.
The government also issued its monthly report on the U.S. trade balance, showing the gap narrowed to $43.7 million in April, instead of the expected widening.
Companies: After the market closed Wednesday, Texas Instruments (TXN, Fortune 500) lowered its outlook for second-quarter earnings and revenue. Shares of the technology company fell 4.5% in after-hours trading, and dipped less than 1% in premarket trading.
J.M. Smucker (SJM, Fortune 500) shares rose 2.5% after the jam and jelly maker reported a fourth-quarter profit that topped forecasts by a penny per share.
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