NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks resumed their climb as investors got upbeat readings on two of the best gauges of the economy's health: consumer spending and corporate profits.
Stocks have ended higher Thursday as retail sales post improved their first sales gains in more than a year.
A surprisingly strong profit report from Alcoa also lifted stocks, as did news from the Labor Department that claims for jobless benefits fell more than expected last week.
The Dow Jones industrials are up 61 at 9,787 after slipping Wednesday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index is up 8 at 1,065. The Nasdaq composite index is up 14 at 2,124.
Two stocks rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume totaled 1.3 billion compared with 1.1 billion Wednesday.