Stocks Opened Lower, Retreated from Record Highs

U.S. stocks opened slightly lower on Thursday, retreating from record highs, as doubts grew over prospects for a so-called phase one trade deal between the U.S. and China. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately lost 10.36 points, or 0.04%, to 27,773.23. The S&P 500 edged lower 0.48 point, or 0.02%, to 3,093.56. The Nasdaq Composite declined 14.39 points, or 0.17%, to 8,467.71.

Oil futures gained ground Thursday as investors awaited a government tally of U.S. crude inventories following industry figures that showed an unexpected decline in stocks. West Texas Intermediate crude futures for December delivery rose 52 cents, or 0.9%, to $57.64 a barrel, while January Brent crude was up 59 cents, or 0.9%, at $62.96 a barrel.

Applications to collect unemployment benefits rose last week to the highest level since the end of June, topping all economists’ forecasts. Jobless claims increased by 14,000 to 225,000 in the week ended Nov. 9, Labor Department data showed on Thursday.

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