U.S. markets rose Thursday morning 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.
In midmorning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 43.29 points, or 0.34 percent, to 12,824.24. The Standard & Poor's 500 index added 0.94 points, or 0.07 percent, to 1,344.17. The Nasdaq composite index was up 3.08 points, or 0.11 percent, to 2,918.91.
The benchmark 10-year treasury note fell 9/32 to yield 1.957 percent.
The euro fell to $1.3041 from Wednesday's $1.3066. Against the yen, the dollar rose to 78.83 yen from Wednesday's 78.43 yen.
In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index lost 0.24 percent, 22.24 points, to 9,238.10.