* Weekly jobless claims rise, but labor market remains strong
* ISM non-manufacturing data slips to 53.4 but beats expectations
* February monthly labor data expected on Friday
* Herbalife falls after database snafu botches growth numbers
* Indexes down: Dow 0.13 pct, S&P 0.11 pct, Nasdaq 0.20 pct (Adds details, changes comment, updates prices)
By Tanya Agrawal
March 3 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were slightly lower in late morning trading on Thursday as investors parsed a barrage of economic data and awaited the monthly jobs report.
Earlier in the day, data showed weekly jobless claims rose unexpectedly, but the underlying trend continued to point to a strengthening labor market.
The data comes ahead of the comprehensive labor report for February on Friday. The report is expected to show an addition of 190,000 jobs, compared with 151,000 in January.
While concerns linger over the state of the global economy, upbeat data from major economies this week and signs of a rebound in commodity prices have helped ease some of those worries.
Brent crude rose 0.7 percent to $37.20 and is up about 35 percent from last month’s lows. U.S. crude was up 1.1 percent at $35.03.
The ISM non-manufacturing PMI index slowed to 53.4 in February from 53.5 the month before, but came in above expectations of 53.2.
“We’ve had a pretty nice run off late because of oil prices steadying and positive macro economic data,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities in New York.
“Investors are in a wait-and-see mode ahead of the jobs report tomorrow and there is some profit taking too.”
At 11:09 a.m. ET (1600 GMT) the Dow Jones industrial average was down 21.68 points, or 0.13 percent, at 16,877.64, the S&P 500 was down 2.18 points, or 0.11 percent, at 1,984.27 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 9.55 points, or 0.2 percent, at 4,693.88.
Five of the 10 major S&P 500 sectors were lower, with the health index’s 0.83 percent fall leading the decliners.
Solid economic data could bolster expectations that the Federal Reserve remains on track to raise interest rates this year. Fed funds futures suggested traders are pricing in a 61 percent chance of a rate hike by year-end. The central bank meets next on March 15-16.
“The likelihood of the Fed raising in March is very low,” said Jeff Powell, managing partner of Polaris Greystone Financial Group in California.
Powell said a weak jobs report might spook the market but the general trend is positive.
As of Wednesday’s close, the S&P 500 index is down only 2.8 percent, recouping from a fall of over 10 percent earlier this year.
Shares of Herbalife were down 6.9 percent at $52.50 after the company said it had overstated growth in the number of new members in some instances due to a database error.
Kroger was down 7.5 percent at $37.57 after the largest U.S. supermarket operator’s quarterly sales missed estimates.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,985 to 904. On the Nasdaq, 1,634 issues rose and 965 fell.
The S&P 500 index showed 8 new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 28 new highs and 14 new lows. (Reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Anil D‘Silva)