NEW YORK, New York - U.S. industrial stocks were upbeat on Thursday after a report that jobless claims fell 92,000 to 498,000 for the week, down from 590,000 last week.
The Dow Jones exploded higher to set a new record.
"Investors are encouraged by the low-interest rates and the stimulus that the government is putting into the economy. We're also seeing substantial increases in economic projections and earnings forecasts," Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research told Reuters Thomson Thursday.
The tech sector however continued to languish.
At the close on Thursday, the Dow Jones industrials index had gained 318.72 points or 0.93 percent at 34,548.53.
The Standard and Poor's 500 added 34.24 points or 0.82 percent to 4,201.62.
The Nasdaq Composite gained 50.42 points or 0.37 percent to 13,632.84.
The U.S. dollar lost ground against all the major currencies except the British pound, which fell to 1.3894 approaching the New York close on Thursday.
The euro shot higher to finish the day around 1.2061. The Japanese yen jumped to 109.05. The Swiss franc was sharply higher at 0.9082.
The Canadian dollar burst through crucial levels to finish around 1.2177, a multi-year high, not seen since September 2017.
The Australian dollar strengthened to 0.7783. The New Zealand dollar advanced to 0.7234.
In Europe, the German Dax stacked on 0.17 percent. The Paris-based CASC 40 climbed 0.28 percent.
London's FTSE 100 added 0.52 percent.
On Asian markets, the Australian All Ordinaries on the ASX (Australian Stock Exchange) dropped 51.00 points or 0.69 percent to close at 7,293.20.
Elsewhere, in Japan, the Nikkei 225 was on fire. The key index jumped 497.73 points or 1.73 percent to 29,310.14.
China's Shanghai Composite was flat after adding just 5.58 points or 0.16 percent to 3,441.28.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng advanced 219.46 points or 0.77 percent to 28,637.46.