LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Good corporate earnings news and encouraging jobs data led stocks higher and the Dow to reclaim most of its losses from Wednesday.
Weekly unemployment aid falls
Leading the pack of economic data: The Labor Department's report that the number of Americans seeking unemployment aid fell last week to seasonally adjusted 324,000, that's the lowest since January 2008.
That drop pointing to fewer layoffs and possibly more hiring.
Meanwhile, economists are forecasting that the economy added 160,000 jobs last month.
That would be much better than the 88,000 added in March, but below last year's pace of nearly 185,000 per month.
We'll know more about April unemployment later Friday, when the government releases the April jobs report.
The unemployment rate is expected to remain unchanged at 7.6 percent.
More momentum in Arkansas home sales
Here in Arkansas, the latest on the state's housing market points to more momentum in home sales.
The Arkansas Realtors Association reporting that home sales in March rose by 7 percent.
The average price of those home sales also rose, up 5 percent to about 154-thousand dollars.
Benton County in northwest Arkansas led the way for home sales in March -- with 412, up about 28 percent from the same month last year. Pulaski County had 342 home sales, up 2 percent.