NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are rising on Wall Street Thursday as hope remains that Washington can approve more aid for the economy and after a report suggested the pace of layoffs is slowing a bit, though it remains incredibly high.

The S&P 500 was 0.5% higher in morning trading, tacking more gains onto Wednesday’s rise after President Donald Trump apparently backtracked on his decision to halt talks on more aid for the economy. He said in a televised interview Thursday morning that “very productive” talks have begun on stimulus.

Other U.S. and global stock indexes were also higher, but the last few weeks of trading have shown repeatedly that early gains for the market don’t always last. Stocks have been particularly rocky since early September, swerving on worries about everything from too-expensive prices to the still-raging pandemic, but the index has been generally climbing the last two weeks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 70 points or 0.2%, at 28,374 as of 10:15 a.m. Eastern time. The Nasdaq composite was 0.4% higher.

A government report showed that 840,000 workers applied for unemployment benefits last week. That’s down slightly from 849,000 the prior week, though it’s still remarkably high compared with history. It also was slightly worse than economists were expecting, 837,000.

Several areas of the economy have been slowing recently after supplemental weekly unemployment benefits and other stimulus for the economy approved by Congress earlier this year expired. That has investors focused on whether Congress can deliver more aid. So far, bitter partisanship on Capitol Hill has been preventing a deal.

That’s caused the market to swoop up and down this week in particular. On Tuesday, Trump said that he told his representatives to halt negotiations until after the election because he said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was

The U.S. real estate market is topsy-turvy in the pandemic economy. There are fewer homes for sale than usual, and more competition. Prices are up in most markets, yet slipping in others. How do millennials, with their growing families and increasing housing needs, fit into this confusing picture?

A new survey by Point2, a real estate search site, asked 6,780 millennials (ages 25 to 40) about their buying plans. The results suggest the largest generation is woefully unprepared for homeownership.

While 74 percent of millennials surveyed indicated they wanted to buy a home with a year, about 88 percent of them didn’t have enough saved to make the average U.S. down payment, about $62,000. In fact, 14 percent reported no savings at all.

Roughly 40 percent estimated they’d need $10,000 or less to put down on a home. In reality, among the 100 largest U.S. cities, only in Detroit would $10,000 be enough for a standard 20 percent down payment on a median-priced home. In San Francisco, at the other end of the scale, the down payment required is more than 20 times than in Detroit, about $218,000.

Given that the typical U.S. household historically saves 8 percent of its income, millennials need to buckle down, if they can afford it, and save more. A possible glimmer of hope: Americans of all ages have begun to put some money away during the pandemic. In April the average savings rate catapulted to almost 34 percent of income, though it dropped to about 14 percent by August, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

This week’s chart, based on Point2’s survey, shows the top and bottom 10 cities among the 100 largest in the U.S., ranked by median home price, and how long it would take millennials to save for a down

Sensex at Four-Month High Despite India Overtaking Russia for Third Biggest Tally of Virus Cases

Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg

Indian stocks rose after a volatile start as the central bank’s new monetary policy committee began meeting ahead of a decision later this week.

The S&P BSE Sensex advanced 0.8% to 39,871.03 as of 10:47 a.m. in Mumbai, after slipping as much as 0.3%. The NSE Nifty 50 Index added 0.4%. Gains were driven by India’s most valuable company, Reliance Industries Ltd., which said it will get a $750 million investment in its retail unit.

The interest rate decision due on Friday is likely to see borrowing costs held at a record low as inflation remains elevated, potentially benefiting lenders’ net interest margins. Meanwhile, signs of economic revival may bode well for consumer spending as India heads into its seasonal festive season.

“If we get more liquidity, whether directly or indirectly from the RBI, it could lead to a rally in financial stocks,” said Abhimanyu Sofat, head of research at IIFL Securities Ltd. in Mumbai.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond fell by one basis point to 6.02%, while the rupee weakened 0.1% to 73.5350 against the U.S. dollar.

Read: A Surprisingly Dovish RBI Could Undermine Indian Rupee

Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. is scheduled to kick of the quarterly earnings season with its results today, with investors watching for commentary on global demand, new deals and a share buy-back proposal.

Read: India’s IT Firms Set to Post Strong Earnings on Demand Revival

The Numbers

  • Ten of 19 sector sub-indexes compiled by BSE Ltd. rose, led by a group of energy companies, while the rest declined.
  • As many Sensex shares gained as those that rose; Bajaj Finance Ltd. fell the most, with a 4.2% drop, and was the biggest drag on the gauge.

The US trade deficit continued to widen in August to its highest point in 14 years, as imports outpaced exports amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, according to official data released Tuesday.

The deficit rose 5.9 percent from July to $67.1 billion, increasing more than expected but posting a more moderate jump than the nearly 19 percent surge in the month prior, according to the Commerce Department report.

However, the August trade gap was the largest since August 2006, and the deficit in goods alone was the highest on record at $83.9 billion.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer cheered the data, saying it showed the United States — home to the world’s worst coronavirus outbreak with more than 210,000 people dead — performed better than other countries amid the downturn.

“As other countries recover and reopen, we expect both imports and exports to improve substantially,” he said in a statement.

US exports increased $3.6 billion to $171.9 billion in August, not enough to offset the $7.4 billion climb in imports to $239 billion.

The growth in the deficit came from a slight decrease in the services surplus to $16.8 billion, as travel and tourism are largely shut down, while the goods deficit climbed $3.0 billion.

The Commerce Department warned, “Exports and imports in August reflect both the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the continued recovery from the sharp declines earlier this year.”

The US trade deficit in August was at its widest since 2008 and third-largest on record The US trade deficit in August was at its widest since 2008 and third-largest on record Photo: AFP / Guillermo Arias

Those disruptions were brought on by business shutdowns and border closures to stop the spread of the virus, measures that have eased somewhat in the US and elsewhere as firms adapt to new health protocols.

“Exports and imports are continuing to recover from low levels, though

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The global economy is in “less dire” shape than it was in June but risks crashing again if governments end fiscal and monetary support too soon, fail to control the coronavirus and ignore emerging market debt problems, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva makes remarks during a closing news conference for the International Monetary Finance Committee (IMFC), during the IMF and World Bank’s 2019 Annual Meetings of finance ministers and bank governors, in Washington, U.S., October 19, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Theiler/File Photo

Georgieva told an online London School of Economics event that the IMF will make a small upward revision to its global economic output forecasts next week, adding: “My key message is this: The global economy is coming back from the depths of this crisis.”

“But this calamity is far from over. All countries are now facing what I would call ‘the long ascent’ – a difficult climb that will be long, uneven, and uncertain. And prone to setbacks,” she added in a speech billed as her “curtainraiser” for next week’s IMF and World Bank annual meetings.

The Fund in June forecast that coronavirus-related shutdowns would shrink global gross domestic product by 4.9%, marking the sharpest contraction since the Great Depression of the 1930s, and called for more policy support from governments and central banks.

The IMF will publish its revised forecasts next week as member countries participate in the meetings, which will be held largely in an online format.

Georgieva said the IMF was continuing to project a “partial and uneven” recovery in 2021. In June, it forecast 2021 global growth of 5.4%.

But $12 trillion in fiscal support, coupled with unprecedented monetary easing, has allowed many advanced economies, including the United