Initial jobless claims came in well below expectations, leading to a run of revisions to monthly payroll forecasts which are centering at a decline a bit under 200,000 in what would be another incremental improvement. Housing starts data were mixed but aren't derailing expectations for continued recovery in housing.
The S&P 500 slipped 0.3 percent to 1,065 in narrow trading. Though markets were quiet during the session there's heavy debate whether the historic run from 666 is way too much. Many say yes but not Federated Securities which argues the "real" market low hit in October at 840, when the greatest number of shares hit extreme lows, not just financials as in March. Given the 840 base, Federated says the six-month gain is not outsized for the early stages of economic recovery. Commodities were steady with oil ending at $72.50 and gold at $1,016. The dollar index was little changed at 76.26.