U.S. stocks fell at the start of trade Thursday, reversing premarket gains, after the Labor Department reported that 6.6 million Americans applied for jobless benefits in the week ended March 28, a new record.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 150 points, or 0.7% to trade around 20,825, the S&P 500 index lost about 8 points, or 0.3% to 2,466 and the Nasdaq Composite index retreated 14 points, or 0.2%, to start session at about 7,343.
The new figures bring the total number of Americans applying for unemployment payments to 10 million during the final two weeks of March, indicating the massive economic impact of strategies aimed at combating the spread of COVID-19.
U.S. stock-index futures had been trading higher overnight and early Thursday after a bounce in oil prices helped boost sentiment, triggered by statements by President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin that a global price war may soon end.
The price of a barrel of West Texas Intermediate Crude oil for May delivery rose $1.70, or 8.4% to $21.98 early Thursday.
Source : Market Watch