Stocks Climbed as Fed Stimulus Seen Intact

U.S. stocks climbed on Thursday on tepid economic data that eased concerns the Federal Reserve would begin to  gradually decrease its policies to stimulate growth. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 21.73 points, or 0.14%,  to 15,324.53. The S&P 500 index climbed 6.05 points, or 0.37%, to 1,654.41. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 23.78  points, or 0.69%, to 3,491.30.

The U.S. economy grew a touch slower in the first three months of 2013 than previously believed, mainly because of a  slower buildup in inventories and a somewhat steeper drop in government spending. Gross domestic product expanded at  an annual rate of 2.4% in the first quarter, down from an initial estimate of 2.5%, the Commerce Department said  Thursday.

ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steelmaker, said Thursday that it has completed the sale of a 15 percent stake in  one of its Canadian iron ore operations to an Asian-led consortium for $1.1 billion in cash.

Guess Inc.(GES) reported a first-quarter adjusted profit of 14 cents a share. That topped the 8-cent average  estimate of analysts surveyed by FactSet. The company forecast full-year profit of $1.70 to $1.90 a share. Analysts  were looking for $1.78 a share.

Splunk Inc. (SPLK) on Thursday reported a first-quarter loss of $16.1 million, or 16 cents a share, on revenue of  $57.2 million. During the year-ago quarter, the data-intelligence software company lost $20.5 million, or 71 cents a  share, on sales of $37.1 million. Excluding one-time items, Splunk would have lost 6 cents a share.

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