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Stock futures resume modest rise after mixed data

U.S. stock-index futures retrieved modest gains on Thursday after a second estimate had first-quarter growth contracting more than expected, but weekly jobless claims coming in better than hoped.

The Commerce Department reported gross domestic product declined at a 1 percent annualized rate in the first quarter, with the drop larger than the 0.4 percent contraction estimated by analysts.

"The second estimate of GDP is backward looking. We knew that weather dramatically impacted growth in the first quarter and we fully expect a bounce back in the second quarter," noted Dan Greenhaus, chief strategist at BTIG.

Another report had initial jobless claims falling by 27,000 to 300,000 last week, compared to estimates of a 326,000 level. The latest number is "a positive," and brings the four-week average to 311,500, the lowest since August 2007, offered Peter Boockvar, chief market analyst at the Lindsey Group.

Separate data on pending home sales in April is expected at 10 a.m. Eastern.

The 10-year Treasury yield used in figuring mortgage rates and other consumer loans down 1 basis point at 2.437 percent. The dollar declined against the currencies of major U.S. trading partners.

Gold futures were down $6.40 at $1,252.90 an ounce, and the price of oil increased 2 cents to $102.74 a barrel.

Shares of Costco Wholesale edged lower in pre-market trading after the warehouse club operator reported third-quarter results beneath analysts' estimates.

Stocks ended a four-session rally on Wednesday, with investors skittish as the 10-year Treasury yield fell to 2.44 percent, its lowest closing level since last July. The move in U.S. yields followed falls in their German counterparts on news of an increase in Germany's unemployment.

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