US Stocks Rise on Solid Reports

(AP) -- Stocks rose in morning trading on Wall Street Thursday as the latest government data showed continued economic growth and investors reviewed another batch of mostly positive corporate earnings reports.

Investors are also awaiting the market debut of online brokerage Robinhood, which has priced its IPO at $38 per share. The company and other online brokerages rattled Wall Street earlier this year when investors used the platforms to drive up stock prices to seemingly unreasonable levels for "meme" stocks like GameStop.

The S&P 500 index rose 0.4% as of 9:55 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 123 points, or 0.4%, to 35,052 and the Nasdaq rose 0.3%.

The gains were broad, with about 90% of the stocks in the benchmark S&P 500 rising. Technology companies made some of the biggest gains, along with a wide range of retailers and other consumer-oriented companies.

Facebook fell 3.9% and weighed down the communications sector after it warned of slower growth through the rest of the year.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note edged higher to 1.27% from 1.26% late Wednesday.

A government report helped ease some concerns on Wall Street about the pace of the economic recovery. The Commerce Department said the U.S. economy grew at a solid 6.5% annual rate last quarter. The total size of the economy has now surpassed its pre-pandemic level. It also revised its figures for 2020, showing that the economy contracted by a slightly smaller amount than previously reported.

Investors were also given encouraging news on the broader employment picture, which has tended to lag the rest of the recovery. Claims for unemployment benefits dropped by 24,000 to 400,000 last week, the Labor Department reported.

The upbeat economic data follows the Federal Reserve's statement on Wednesday signaling that it will keep its support measures for the economy intact.

Yum Brands, which owns KFC and Taco Bell, rose 3.7% after strong customer demand helped it handily beat Wall Street's profit and revenue forecasts. Ford rose 5.3% after it reported a surprise second-quarter profit on sales of its pickup trucks and SUVs.