U.S. stocks opened higher on Thursday after jobless claims and productivity reports proved more upbeat than expected, while networking equipment maker Cisco Systems reported a bounce back in sales. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 84 points to 9,886. The S&P 500 Index added 7 points to 1,053. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 23 points to 2,078. Cisco is up 2% lifting all the techs. Netsuite and Qualcomm are both up over 3% following earnings. Research in Motion is up 2% following an announced share buyback. The financials are modestly higher although the stocks reporting earnings are lower including Prudential, Allstate, Manulife, SunLife Financial, and MF Global. The retail sector is struggling this morning after reporting October sales. Abercrombie & Fitch is down 12%, American Eagle is down 9%, JC Penney is down 7%, while Gap is up 3%. Urban Outfitters, Limited Brands, Dr. Pepper Snapple, and Orbitz are lower following earnings. Other earnings are coming in from Whole Foods, CVS Caremark, MGM Mirage, Worldwide Wrestling, Time Warner, Cigna, Direct TV, and Sara Lee. Whole Foods and CVS Caremark are both down 9% while the rest are higher. After the first half an hour, the averages kept pushing higher. The Dow rose 130 points. The Nasdaq rose 36 points. Very similar to yesterday. Hopefully the rally holds up this time. Through the morning the averages kept inching higher. The Dow rose 180 points putting it within striking distance of 10,000. The Nasdaq rose 46 points. An IPO today, Hyatt Hotel went off better than expected. The stock is up 8%. That's a good sign.
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