U.S. stocks traded higher on Thursday following lower-than-expected jobless claims data.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 95 points, or 0.26%, hitting an all-time high, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite rose 0.14% and 0.25%, respectively. Both the Dow and the S&P 500 are on track for record closing highs.
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||36524.24||+35.61||+0.10%|
|I:COMP||NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX||15847.396128||+81.18||+0.51%|
Oil is trading around the $76 per barrel mark.
On the economic data front, applications for initial jobless claims for the week ending Dec. 25 totaled 198,000, down from a revised 206,000 the prior week, according to Labor Department data released Thursday. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv were expecting 208,000 total claims.
Continuing claims, which track the total number of unemployed workers collecting benefits, fell to 1.716 million, a decline from the prior week.
Midwest manufacturing activity also expanded quicker than anticipated after the Institute for Supply Management’s Chicago Purchasing Managers’ index came in at a reading of 63.1 for December. A reading of 50 is the dividing line between an expanding and contracting manufacturing sector.
In stocks, shares of Biogen fell 6% in premarket trading after Samsung denied a Korea Economic Daily report that it was in talks to buy the biotechnology giant.
Markets will be closed on Friday in observation of the New Year’s holiday.