Initial jobless claims, existing home sales — What to know in markets Thursday

Heidi Chung
Reporter

The Fed delivered it policy decision on Tuesday and decided to cut interest rates for the second time this year by 25 basis points to a target range of 1.75% to 2%. After falling as much as 211 points, the Dow erased those earlier losses and closed Tuesday’s session up 36 points. The S&P 500 also reversed course and ended the session in positive territory.

Thursday, corporate earnings reports remain light. Nevertheless, on the economic data front, investors can expect the weekly initial jobless claims figures as well as existing home sales for the month of August.

Initial jobless claim for the week ended September 14 are expected to have risen to 215,000, up from 204,000 in the week prior. Meanwhile, existing home sales in August are expected to have fallen 0.9% during the month, after rising 2.5% in July. On Tuesday, housing starts in the U.S. rose much more significantly than expected to their highest level since 2007. The Commerce Department reported that August’s housing starts jumped 12.3% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.364 million units.

In this Aug. 16, 2019, photo a for sale signs beckon buyers to homes along Park Avenue in Richmond, Va. On Thursday, Aug. 22, Freddie Mac reports on this week’s average U.S. mortgage rates. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

The U.S. housing market has been struggling for the past year or so. But with the strong August housing starts data, economists believe that low mortgage rates are having a meaningful impact on the broader housing market.

Other notable economic data set to be released Thursday include the following:

8:30 a.m. ET: Current Account Balance, Q2 (-$125.7 billion expected, -$130.4 billion in Q1); Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook, September (11.0 expected, 16.8 in August); Initial Jobless Claims, week ended September 14 (215,000 expected, 204,000 prior); Continuing Claims, week ended September 7 (1.670 million prior)

9:45 a.m. ET: Bloomberg Consumer Comfort, week of September 15 (63.2 prior);

10 a.m. ET: Leading Index, August (0.1% expected, 0.5% in July); Existing Home Sales, August (-0.9% expected, 2.5% in July)

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Heidi Chung is a reporter at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @heidi_chung.

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