Stocks also got a boost from strong Walmart quarterly earnings. The results sent Walmart shares surging 10 percent after the company reported its biggest jump in U.S. sales in a decade. The surge led Walmart to contribute about 60 points to the price-weighted Dow. The results also lifted shares of Target, which gained 1.6 percent.
“The Walmart surprise really lifted investor sentiment,” said Mike Bailey, director of research at FBB Capital Partners. “You don’t have to be a FANG to grow; that’s what Walmart is telling you.”
Cisco Systems also reported better-than-expected earnings, sending its stock up 4.2 percent. The company’s results got a boost from an income surge from segments like cyber security and applications.
The moves Thursday come after stocks fell sharply in the previous session, as lingering worries around Turkey’s economic and financial situation, a sell-off in commodities and a drop in tech shares all contributed to the declines.
Jerry Braakman, chief investment officer at First American Trust, said he was not too worried about the decline, however. “I think people were just taking some gains off the table,” he said. “We’re coming off a great earnings season. Earnings growth has actually outpaced the market in appreciation this year.”
Weekly jobless claims totaled 212,000 last week, slightly below than the Reuters estimate of 215,000. Meanwhile, housing starts totaled 1.168 million in July, well below the expected 1.26 million.