Wall Street pulls back as dismal economic data piles higher

Stocks are pulling back on Wall Street as more grim news piles up about the economic damage caused the coronavirus outbreak. The S&P 500 index fell as much as 1.3% early Thursday but cut its loss to 0.7% thanks to gains for Facebook and a handful of other big companies that released encouraging quarterly results. Treasury yields were also lower, while European stocks fell more sharply. The U.S. government reported more than 3.8 million laid-off workers applied for unemployment benefits last week, and data showed the European economy contracted by a record 3.8% in the first three months of the year.