Aug. 9 - Summary of business headlines: S&P 500 in five-day swing, but Dow falters; Cisco lifts Nasdaq; Jobless claims fall; Bieber fever lifts Elizabeth Arden sales. Bobbi Rebell reports.
Make it five in a row for the Standard & Poor's 500. Hopes of further economic stimulus in China and good economic news helping stocks squeeze out gains. The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits fell by 6,000 last week. Also encouraging- a separate report showed the shortfall in the trade balance narrowed by more than 10 percent- the smallest since December 2010- low oil prices curbed imports. Also driving stocks: China's annual consumer inflation fell to a 30-month low in July. That kept hopes alive for further monetary stimulus in the world's second-biggest economy. Part of what gave the Nasdaq a boost: Cisco. A number of brokerage firms including Goldman Sachs put out positive notes on the company. The news keeping traders on their toes says Phil Pearlman of StockTwits: SOUNDBITE: PHIL PEARLMAN EXECUTIVE EDITOR, STOCKTWITS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "It's the dog days of summer, August, however there is a ton going on. We had a really nice rally, its climbed a wall of worry, classic term, everybody doubts it, everybody is buying puts into this so there is a lot of doubters out there still and there is a ton going on. From the whole knight capital mess to earnings finishing up." Chili's parent Brinker International posting better than expected profits thanks to cost savings. And number two U.S. hamburger chain Wendy's reported profits in line with forecasts. Justin Beiber working his charm on Elizabeth Arden earnings. The teen pop star's celebrity scent helping lift fragrance sales so much that the beauty giant is raising its 2013 profit forecast. Elizabeth Arden also reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings. Taking a look at the closing numbers: A mixed picture in the U.S.; The Dow lost ground but the other major indexes managed to eek out modest gains. And in Europe: shares edged closer to new 2012 highs, extending gains to a 5th session. The major indexes, however, closed mixed. Bobbi Rebell, Reuters