U.S. stocks shaved earlier gains to end in mixed territory Thursday, with the S&P 500 jumping to a record high, as the country's economic data came in mixed.
The S&P 500 added 3.22 points, or 0.17 percent, to 1,877.03, its second all-time closing high in the week. The broader S&P 500 also set an all-time intraday high of 1,881.94 in the trading session.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 61.71 points, or 0.38 percent, to 16,421.89, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was down 5. 85 points, or 0.13 percent, to 4,352.13.
In the week ending March 1, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 323,000, a decrease of 26,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 349,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. Economists had forecast the claims to drop to 338, 000.
A separate report from the Labor Department showed nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 1.8-percent annual rate during the fourth quarter of 2013.
Moreover, the Commerce Department said new orders for manufactured goods in January decreased 0.7 percent, more than expected. Excluding volatile sector transportation, however, new orders increased 0.2 percent.
Recent economic weakness isn't enough to alter the Federal Reserve's plan to cut back its massive asset buying program at coming policy meetings, New York Fed President William Dudley told The Wall Street Journal Thursday.
Dudley also said he would advocate abolishing 6.5 percent unemployment rate as a threshold for considering a hike in short- term interest rates at the Fed's next meeting due on March 18-19.
Investors are also expecting the closely-watched nonfarm payrolls report for February due out Friday.
"Tomorrow's payroll report will certainly contain a lot of noise about the weather, but a third month in a row of weak job numbers will cause some to question the ability of this economy to produce meaningful job growth," said Jay Morelock, an economist at FTN Financial.
In corporate news, Costco Wholesale Corp. shares fell 2.76 percent to 113.26 U.S. dollars apiece, after the warehouse club operator reported a 15-percent decline in its net income for the fiscal second-quarter, missing analysts' expectations.
On the previous trading day, Wall Street closed narrowly mixed, with the S&P 500 briefly hitting a record intraday high, after major stock indices logged their best day this year.