U.S. stocks opened higher on Thursday, buoyed by a surprise gain in June payrolls estimated by ADP. Strong same-store sales results from the retailers and comments from European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet are also lending support to the averages. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 58 points to 12,688. The S&P 500 rose 11 points to 1,349. The Nasdaq Composite added 22 points to 2,856. Most everything looks good this morning. Even the financials are higher. Bernstein lowered estimates for Goldman and Morgan Stanley, yet both are higher. Bank of America is up 2% even though a judge will allow homeowners to sue the bank. If it wasn't for bad luck, Bank of America wouldn't have any luck at all. In the commodity space everything looks good. Transocean, Trina Solar, and Kodiak Oil & Gas are higher on upgrades. In the retail space, Urban Outfitters is jumping 6% on an upgrade. Gap, Target, and TJX are all up over 2% thanks to better than expected June sales. Dicks, Las Vegas Sands, and Wynn Resorts are higher on upgrades. In the tech space Apple and Google keep pushing higher. Western Digital, Seagate, and Intel are higher on upgrades. IBM is one of the few techs lower on two downgrades. Through the morning the Dow rose as much as 90 points before pulling back a little into the lunch hour. IBM and Pfizer are the weakest Dow components. The Nasdaq rose 33 points. Everything is well with the markets. Through the afternoon and into the last hour the averages remained strong ahead of the monthly unemployment jobless claims due out tomorrow morning. Into the close the averages saw a little bit of a pullback. Can't blame anyone for taking profits. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 93 points at 12,719. The S&P 500 Index closed up 14 points, or 1.1%, at 1,353 and the Nasdaq Composite Index increased by 38 points, or 1.4%, to close at 2,872.
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