NEW YORK, April 25 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks ended mixed on Thursday, as Wall Street digested a mixed string of earnings reports of big names in broad-range industries, as well as new data pointing to the health of the U.S. economic growth.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 134.97 points, or 0.51 percent, to 26,462.08. The S&P 500 decreased 1.08 points, or 0.04 percent, to 2,926.17. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 16.67 points, or 0.21 percent, to 8,118.68.
U.S. industrial giant 3M's grim quarterly earnings struck a blow on the Dow, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq was powered by robust earnings from Facebook and Microsoft.
Shares of 3M plunged 11.95 percent, after its first-quarter earnings missed market estimates. The manufacturing conglomerate also slashed its full-year earnings guidance as it fared worse in key markets.
The company also announced it will cut around 2,000 jobs across the world, in a bid to restructure its business operations.
Yet shares of Comcast rose 2.58 percent. The cable giant missed first quarter revenue estimates but showed strong growth across several lines of business.
Shares of Facebook and Microsoft rallied 5.85 percent and 3.31 percent respectively, after the two tech heavyweights both reported stronger-than-expected first-quarter earnings after market close on Wednesday.
Six of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors traded lower around market close, with the industrials sector do nearly 2 percent, leading the losers.
On the economic front, U.S. jobless claims saw a sharp increase for the week ending April 20, marking the biggest rise in 19 months.
The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits last week surged to 230,000, an increase of 37,000 from the previous week's revised level, said the Department of Labor.
New orders for manufactured durable goods rose 2.7 percent in March to 258.5 billion U.S. dollars, the U.S. Census Bureau said Thursday.