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  • All major US equity indexes climbed on Thursday as weekly jobless claims fell to their lowest since the start of COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The Federal Reserve was still in mind on Wall Street as policy makers discussed tapering bond buys.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Major US stock indexes gained on Thursday after weekly jobless claims fell to their lowest level since the coronavirus crisis began. The increases marks a reversal of three straight days of declines for the Dow Jones industrial average.

The Labor Department's report showed new jobless claims totaling an unadjusted 444,000 last week. Jobless claims had been expected to rise to 450,000 claims, according to a median estimate from economists surveyed by Bloomberg.

Here's where US indexes stood at 9:50 a.m. on Thursday:

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Continuing claims tracking Americans receiving unemployment benefits leapt to 3.75 million, higher than the 3.63 million estimate. Meanwhile, factory activity in May has been slower than expected in the mid-Atlantic region. The Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Index's reading of 31.5 was below the Econoday estimate of 45.0.

Stocks pared sharp losses on Wednesday afternoon even as minutes from the Federal Reserve's April meeting indicated that policy makers discussed the possibility of cutting back on bond purchases if the economy's expansion keeps accelerating.

Around the markets Thursday, Cisco shares fell after the networking equipment maker's fourth-quarter guidance fell short of expectations. The company is seeing higher costs associated with the global shortage in computer chips.

Dogecoin surged by 15% in a matter of minutes after Elon Musk published another cryptic tweet referencing the meme cryptocurrency.

Gold rose 0.5% to $1,879.18 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields fell, with the 10-year yield at 1.65%.

Oil prices fell. West Texas Intermediate crude lost as much as 1.9%, to $62.19 per barrel.

Bitcoin rose as much as 11%, to $42,540.97.

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