US stocks cling to modest gains amid recession fears

Wall Street stocks clung to narrow gains early Thursday following mixed US economic data in a choppy followup to the Dow's worst session of the year.


Traders work after the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on August 1, 2019, in New York City.(Photo: VCG)

US indices briefly veered into negative territory shortly after the opening bell, but were all positive after 20 minutes.   

The Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 25,529.18, up 0.2 percent. The blue-chip index lost 800 points, or more than three percent, on Wednesday.

The broad-based S&P 500 added 0.3 percent at 2,847.58, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index edged up 0.1 percent to 7,784.48.

Major US indices plunged Wednesday after a key US bond benchmark raised recession worries amid mushrooming fears of a global slowdown due in part to the US-China trade war. 

US retail sales jumped 0.7 percent in July, topping expectations and reassuring investors that US consumers remain on strong footing. 

But on the downside, US manufacturing production dropped 0.4 percent during the same month, as the trade war weighed on the sector.

Among individual stocks, Walmart surged 5.2 percent as it raised its full-year forecast on better-than-expected results, while fellow Dow member Cisco Systems slumped 5.9 percent following a disappointing forecast.