US Stocks Open Mostly Higher Thursday

(AP) -- Stocks were mostly higher on Thursday morning with the exception of technology stocks. Banks and industrial companies were pushing the broader market higher.

The S&P 500 index rose 0.2% as of 10:05 a.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.6% and the technology-heavy Nasdaq was down 0.1%.

Banks were among the biggest gainers in early trading, with Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Citigroup all up 1% or more.

Investors got a mixed set of economic reports on Thursday. The number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits fell yet again to a pandemic low of 406,000. A growing number of states, all of them controlled by Republicans, have started cutting off unemployed workers from the $300-a-week jobless benefit that was part of the latest economic recovery package. That's likely pushing additional Americans into the active labor force.

Meanwhile data on sales of durable goods, that is expensive items that are expected to last three years or more, fell 1.3% according to the Commerce Department. That figure was expected to rise, according to economists.

Lastly the Commerce Department reported that the U.S. economy grew at a 6.4% annual rate in the first quarter as the economy recovers from the pandemic.

Investors will turn their attention to Friday's inflation data. The growing economy has raised inflation concerns, though analysts expect that much of the increase will be tied to economic growth and will be digestible.

The data out Friday is the Commerce Department's personal consumption expenditures index, more commonly referred to as PCE. The Federal Reserve, whose job is to monitor and control inflation as best as they can, tends to rely on PCE data more than the more widely known consumer price index, or CPI, when making policy decisions.

Bond yields have been relatively stable this week, and remained so on Thursday. The 10-year U.S. Treasury note traded at a yield of 1.61%, up from 1.57% the day before. It has remained in this range for the last two weeks.