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Stocks Open Higher On ECB Move to Cut Benchmark Interest Rate


U.S. stocks moved higher at the opening bell Thursday after a surprise from the European Central Bank, unexpectedly cutting its key interest rate. The ECB President Mario Draghi announced a new plan to stimulate the economy that involves a bond-buying program along with lowering its benchmark rate to 0.05 percent. The U.S. government reported 302,000 claims for unemployment benefits were filed last week. Separately, the August ADP report found the private sector added 204,000 jobs, less than expected. Also, a survey by Challenger, Gray and Christmas showed fewer layoffs happened in August. The firm said planned cuts totaled about 40,000, down 21 percent from a year ago. Family Dollar Stores (FDO) may be a stock to watch in today's trading. Reuters is reporting activist investor Carl Icahn sold off his entire stake in the stock. Icahn had pressured Family Dollar to sell itself.