Stocks climb for third day, even as unemployment soars

Stocks climb for third day, even as unemployment soars
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The stock market on Thursday opened to slight gains following a two-day upswing, shooting up even as new data showed unemployment continuing to skyrocket and greater economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 89 points, or 0.4 percent, and the S&P 500 was up 5 points, or 0.2 percent.

Earlier Thursday, the Labor Department reported that an additional 2.1 million people filed for unemployment benefits last week, continuing a record-breaking streak that has put roughly a fourth of the American workforce out of work.

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The Commerce Department said the economy shrank at an annualized rate of 5 percent in the first quarter, more than the 4.8 percent it had announced in its advance estimate.

But with states and cities moving to reopen and several promising vaccine candidates in the works, markets are looking past the bad news in anticipation of a strong recovery.

Even with a major bounceback in the third quarter, however, unemployment is expected to remain in the double digits, higher thanĀ its Great Recession peak, into 2021.