Markets solid after drop in US jobless claims - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Markets solid after drop in US jobless claims

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  • Ohio gas prices up again to start work week

    Ohio gas prices up again to start work week

    Monday, April 21 2014 6:02 AM EDT2014-04-21 10:02:45 GMT
    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Gas prices in Ohio are up slightly to start the work week. The cost for a gallon of regular gas in Ohio was averaging $3.70 in Monday's survey from auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. That's up about 2 cents from a week ago. Monday's Ohio price is 16 cents higher than a month ago, and about 5 cents higher than last year at this time. The national average Monday was 3.67 per gallon. That's up 3 cents from last week, and it's 15 cents higher th...More >>
    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Gas prices in Ohio are up slightly to start the work week. The cost for a gallon of regular gas in Ohio was averaging $3.70 in Monday's survey from auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. That's up about 2 cents from a week ago. Monday's Ohio price is 16 cents higher than a month ago, and about 5 cents higher than last year at this time. The national average Monday was 3.67 per gallon. That's up 3 cents from last week, and it's 15 cents higher th...More >>
  • Fracking foes cringe as unions back drilling boom

    Fracking foes cringe as unions back drilling boom

    Sunday, April 20 2014 9:25 PM EDT2014-04-21 01:25:56 GMT
    PITTSBURGH (AP) - After early complaints that out-of-state firms got the most jobs, some local construction workers and union members in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia say they're now benefiting in a big way from the Marcellus and Utica Shale fracking boom.That vocal support from blue-collar workers complicates efforts by environmentalists to limit drilling.The Laborers' International Union, or LIUNA, says that construction work its members do on large pipeline jobs in Pennsylvania and ...More >>
    PITTSBURGH (AP) - After early complaints that out-of-state firms got the most jobs, some local construction workers and union members in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia say they're now benefiting in a big way from the Marcellus and Utica Shale fracking boom.That vocal support from blue-collar workers complicates efforts by environmentalists to limit drilling.The Laborers' International Union, or LIUNA, says that construction work its members do on large pipeline jobs in Pennsylvania and ...More >>
  • Ohio hog farms hit by disease that kills baby pigs

    Ohio hog farms hit by disease that kills baby pigs

    Sunday, April 20 2014 9:22 PM EDT2014-04-21 01:22:01 GMT
    TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - Hog farms in Ohio are reporting cases of a relatively new disease that kills newborn pigs.The state's agriculture department says it has recorded a couple hundred confirmed cases of the virus across Ohio.The disease first found a year ago causes baby pigs to become dehydrated and die.Severe strains of the virus can wipe out a farm's entire supply of baby pigs.The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently said the die-off has had a hand in shrinking the nation's pig herd by 3...More >>
    TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - Hog farms in Ohio are reporting cases of a relatively new disease that kills newborn pigs.The state's agriculture department says it has recorded a couple hundred confirmed cases of the virus across Ohio.The disease first found a year ago causes baby pigs to become dehydrated and die.Severe strains of the virus can wipe out a farm's entire supply of baby pigs.The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently said the die-off has had a hand in shrinking the nation's pig herd by 3...More >>

LONDON (AP) - The mood in financial markets remained buoyant Thursday after an improvement in weekly jobless claims figures in the U.S. and as the main Wall Street stock indexes eyed new highs.

On Wednesday, both the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones hit all-time closing highs, giving a positive tone to trading in Asia and Europe. The indexes continued their march higher on Thursday, adding another 0.3 percent each.

A 42,000 drop in weekly U.S. jobless claims to 346,000 maintained the upbeat mood as U.S. trading got underway. The surprisingly big fall came after a run of disappointing jobs figures that had raised concerns over the pace of the U.S. economic recovery.

Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, said the weekly fall suggests the "generally improving trend in the job market is continuing."

In Europe, the FTSE 100 index of leading British shares rose 0.5 percent to close at 6,416.14 while Germany's DAX rose 0.8 percent to 7,871.63. The CAC-40 in France gained 0.9 percent higher at 3,775.56.

Over the coming days, the focus will increasingly turn toward U.S. companies as they report first-quarter earnings. So far, the results have been mixed. On Friday, bank earnings will be in the spotlight with updates from JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank.

Investors are also hoping that progress will be made in Washington toward a 2014 federal budget. President Barack Obama proposed a $3.8 trillion plan on Wednesday. Without a budget agreement, a huge array of government spending cuts - known as sequestration - will remain in place. Some economists believe the cuts are hurting growth and employment.

The solid tone in stock markets has helped shore up other supposedly riskier assets, such as the euro, which was trading 0.4 percent higher at $1.3122. The dollar shed some of its recent gains against the Japanese yen, trading 0.2 percent lower at 99.57 yen.

Japanese financial assets have been in the spotlight over the past week or so.

The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo jumped nearly 2 percent to close at 13,549.16, riding a wave of enthusiasm for the Bank of Japan's aggressive new approach to stimulating the world's third-largest economy out of a prolonged slump. That new approach has piled pressure on the yen. Just before the Bank of Japan's announcement, the dollar was trading at a little over 92 yen.

Elsewhere in Asia, South Korea's Kospi added 0.7 percent to 1,949.80, even though the Bank of Korea disappointed some analysts by keeping its key interest rate at 2.75 percent. Some were expecting the central bank would lower the rate to spark borrowing and help the economy.

In the commodity markets, oil prices were subdued, with the benchmark New York rate down $1.37 at $9.27 a barrel. More interest was on the price of gold, which slid 1.7 percent on Wednesday on speculation that Cyprus will sell 400 million euros of the precious metal as part of its financial bailout. On Thursday, an ounce of gold was up 0.4 percent at $1,565.70.

However, Julian Jessop, head of commodities research at Capital Economics, said there's plenty of room for the price of gold to rise, even if the Federal Reserve starts slowing down its stimulus program. That program has been adding to the amount of money in the financial system over the past few years, pushing some investors to buy gold as a reliable store of value.

Even gold sales from other eurozone are unlikely to significantly weigh on market prices, he said.

"If the crisis elsewhere in the eurozone escalates to the point where other, larger countries were desperate enough to consider selling their own gold, demand for safe havens would surely be so strong that there would be plenty of willing buyers - even at higher prices," said Jessop.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    The Scrappers host “POPS at the Ballpark” featuring the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra

    The Scrappers host “POPS at the Ballpark” featuring the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 2:04 PM EDT2014-04-15 18:04:57 GMT
    NILES, Ohio – The Mahoning Valley Scrappers and the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra are excited to host one of the Valley's premiere summer events, POPS at the Ballpark,More >>
    NILES, Ohio – The Mahoning Valley Scrappers and the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra are excited to host one of the Valley's premiere summer events, POPS at the Ballpark, presented by Stanley E. Shearer with Northwestern Mutual and 21 WFMJ on Saturday, August 23, 2014 at Eastwood Field.More >>
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  • GM boosting China production capacity to 5 million

    GM boosting China production capacity to 5 million

    Sunday, April 20 2014 10:52 AM EDT2014-04-20 14:52:53 GMT
    Sales of GM-brand vehicles in China should reach 5 million next year, and Cadillac sales will double to 100,000, the president of General Motors said Sunday.More >>
    The president of General Motors said Sunday that the company and local partners are boosting production capacity for GM-brand vehicles in China to 5 million.More >>
  • Ohio couple married 70 years die 15 hours apart

    Ohio couple married 70 years die 15 hours apart

    Sunday, April 20 2014 9:03 AM EDT2014-04-20 13:03:14 GMT
    NASHPORT, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio couple who held hands at breakfast every morning even after 70 years of marriage have died 15 hours apart.Helen Felumlee (FEHL'-uhm-lee) of Nashport in central Ohio died April 12. She was 92. Her husband, 91-year-old Kenneth Felumlee, died April 13.The couple's children say the two met as teenagers and had been inseparable since then.The Zanesville Times Recorder reports (http://ohne.ws/1in7erG) that the pair married Feb. 20, 1944, and raised eight children.Their...More >>
    NASHPORT, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio couple who held hands at breakfast every morning even after 70 years of marriage have died 15 hours apart.Helen Felumlee (FEHL'-uhm-lee) of Nashport in central Ohio died April 12. She was 92. Her husband, 91-year-old Kenneth Felumlee, died April 13.The couple's children say the two met as teenagers and had been inseparable since then.The Zanesville Times Recorder reports (http://ohne.ws/1in7erG) that the pair married Feb. 20, 1944, and raised eight children.Their...More >>
  • Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Sunday, April 20 2014 8:31 AM EDT2014-04-20 12:31:46 GMT
    POHATCONG TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) - A train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey has ignited several small brush fires.The Express-Times newspaper in Easton, Pennsylvania, reports the fires occurred Saturday in Pohatcong Township and Phillipsburg. No major property damage is reported. A firefighter from the New Jersey state forest fire service fell and dislocated his hip.Huntington Volunteer Fire Company Chief Peter Pursell tells the newspaper the diesel en...More >>
    POHATCONG TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) - A train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey has ignited several small brush fires.The Express-Times newspaper in Easton, Pennsylvania, reports the fires occurred Saturday in Pohatcong Township and Phillipsburg. No major property damage is reported. A firefighter from the New Jersey state forest fire service fell and dislocated his hip.Huntington Volunteer Fire Company Chief Peter Pursell tells the newspaper the diesel en...More >>
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