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U.S. stocks end modestly higher on Greek deal

02-10-2012 08:46 BJT

NEW YORK, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. stocks ended modestly higher on Thursday after Greece agreed on a steeper austerity deal in exchange for the second round of bail money.

The Dow Jones industrial average edged up 6.51 points, or 0.05 percent, at 12,890.46. The Standard & Poor's 500 edged up 1.99 points, or 0.15 percent, to 1,351.95. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 11.37 points, or 0.39 percent, to 2,927.23.

Investors welcomed the news that Greek political leaders had agreed on deeper austerity cuts after days of negotiations. However, stocks only posted small gains after Germany's finance minister questioned whether the deal went far enough to earn a crucial 130-billion-euro bailout.

Investors continued to take a close watch on Greece as the nation's prime minister went to Brussels to talk with European leaders, hoping to secure the second round of bailout money to avoid a disastrous default.

Domestically, Thursday's jobs data came in better than expected, reassuring investors the battered jobs market was steadily picking up.

According to the U.S. Labor Department, the number of people applying for jobless benefits dropped 15,000 to a seasonally- adjusted 358,000 last week, which was the second-lowest level in about four years.

Editor:Zhang Rui |Source: Xinhua

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