New York, Feb 18 (DPA) US stocks gained slightly Thursday as some stronger economic data overshadowed a higher-than-expected rise in the cost of living.
The private Conference Board said its index of economic indicators rose for the seventh straight month, while a gauge of business activity from the US central bank’s Philadelphia division also rose more than expected.
Consumer prices in January rose 0.4 percent for the second straight month, according to monthly Labour Department figures, mainly due to higher petrol and food prices. The last 0.4-percent increase prior to December had been in June 2009.
Ongoing protests in the Middle East, including a violent crackdown by police on demonstrations in Bahrain, also weighed on US investors.
The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 29.97 points, or 0.24 percent, to 12,318.14. The broader Standard and Poor’s 500 Index gained 4.11 points, or 0.31 percent, to 1,340.43. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index added 4.11 points, or 0.21 percent, to 2,831.58.
The US currency fell against the euro to 73.49 euro cents from 73.7 euro cents Wednesday. The dollar also dropped against the Japanese currency to 83.31 yen from 83.65 yen the previous day.