US STOCKS-S&P again hits new high on growth expectations
* Jobless claims fall more than expected, Q1 GDP revised lower
* Apple to buy Beats for $3 bln
* Hillshire jumps, Tyson's bid outshines Pilgrim's Pride's
* Indexes up: Dow 0.1 pct, S&P 500 0.29 pct, Nasdaq 0.34 pct (Updates to mid-afternoon, changes byline)
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, May 29 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Thursday and the benchmark S&P 500 index hit a record intraday high for the third straight day as traders bet on improvement in the second quarter even as data showed the world's largest economy contracted in the first quarter.
The gains were supported by a report showing the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week, pointing to a strengthening labor market. Separately, the Commerce Department cut its estimate of gross domestic product to show the economy shrank at a 1.0 percent annual rate, but there were signs it has rebounded.
"The headline figure was weaker than expected, but it was mainly due to slower inventory growth, which bodes well for future growth, future orders, new orders," said Jeffrey Saut, chief investment strategist at Raymond James Financial in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Saut said unless a decline materialized this week, "It's probably not going to come back below 1,890 - 1,900 (level), which is where the near term support is." Continuación...