NEW YORK – U.S. stocks made small gains on Friday as China's currency stabilized and oil edged up after hitting lowest price in more than six years. Slightly disappointing European growth figures weighed on stock markets there.
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KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 47 points, or 0.2 percent, to 17,445 as of 10:24 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose three points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,086. The Nasdaq composite fell two points, or less than 0.1 percent, to 5,031.
CHINA CALM: China's currency, the yuan, was stable after falling sharply earlier this week. On Friday, the dollar was buying 6.3901 yuan, little changed from the previous day when Zhang Xiaohu, a deputy governor at People's Bank of China, said there is "no basis for persistent and substantial devaluation."
OIL LOW: The price of crude oil is rising after hitting its lowest price in more than six years amid concerns over a slowing economy in China, a huge energy consumer, and abundant global production. The price of benchmark U.S. crude rose 31 cents to $42.54 a barrel.
RETAILERS JUMP: J.C. Penney rose 63 cents, or 7.8 percent, to $8.70 after reporting a narrower loss in its second quarter on stronger-than-expected sales as the department store chain continues to turn its business around. Nordstrom also beat expectations. It rose $4.86 cent, or 6.5 percent, $79.78.
EUROPEAN GROWTH: Figures from The European Union's statistics agency, Eurostat, showed that economic growth across the region was 0.3 percent, down slightly from the 0.4 percent in the first three months of the year. France and Italy were the main disappointments in the figures, though the German data were also somewhat underwhelming when exports were taken out.
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EUROPE'S DAY: Germany's DAX fell 0.1 percent and the CAC-40 in France fell 0.4 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was down 0.1 percent.
GREEK BAILOUT: Greek lawmakers approved a draft of their country's third bailout. The government needed the bill to pass in time for its finance minister to head to Brussels to meet his eurozone counterparts, who will decide Friday afternoon whether to approve the draft deal. Greece needs the 85 billion euros ($93 billion) from the bailout deal to avoid defaulting on its debts.
BONDS: Bond prices fell slightly, pushing up the yield on the 10-year Treasury note to 2.20 percent from 2.19 percent on Thursday.