U.S. markets rose Thursday after the Labor Department said initial jobless benefit claims dropped by 13,000 in the week.
First-time claims have not been this low since 2008. In the week ending Saturday, 348,000 initial claims were filed.
By close of trading Thursday, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 123.13 points, or 0.96 percent, to 12,904.08. The Standard & Poor's 500 index added 14.81 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,358.04. The Nasdaq composite index was up 44.02 points, or 1.51 percent, to 2,959.85.
On the New York Stock Exchange, 2,308 stocks advanced and 780 declined on a volume of 3.9 billion shares traded.
The benchmark 10-year treasury note fell 17/32 to yield 1.986 percent.
The euro rose to $1.3136 from Wednesday's $1.3066. Against the yen, the dollar rose to 78.89 yen from Wednesday's 78.43 yen.
In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index lost 0.24 percent, 22.24 points, to 9,238.10.
In London, the FTSE 100 index shed 0.12 percent, 6.78 points, to 5,885.38.
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