Major U.S. stock indices were driven by earnings reports and GDP data.
The U.S. Commerce Department reported on Thursday that the country's GDP posted a modest 2.3% gain in the second quarter of this year compared with expectations for a 2.6% increase. In the first quarter the economy rose by 0.6% (revised from -0.2%). Market participants were waiting for this data to assess strength of the U.S economy and adjust their expectations for a rate hike. Some analysts believe that a significant revision of the Q1 GDP growth suggests that the Fed may raise rates in September.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 5.41 points, or 0.03%, to 17745.98. The S&P 500 added 0.06 point to 2108.63. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 17.05 points, or 0.3%, to 5128.78.
Facebook Inc. shares fell 1.8% after the company reported a 39% increase in quarterly revenue but noted expenses grew faster than profits.
In Asia this morning Hong Kong Hang Seng rose 0.29%, or 69.95.31 points, to 24,567.93. China Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.93%, or 34.41 points, to 3,671.36. The Nikkei gained 0.13%, or 26.25 points, to 20,549.08.
Japanese stock indices advanced amid inflation data. Japan core consumer price index except fresh food rose by 0.1% vs expectations for a flat reading. Nevertheless the index was well below the 2% inflation target of the Bank of Japan.