The Labor Department said first-time benefit claims for unemployment fell by 23,000 in the week and durable goods orders, Commerce said, rose 9.9 percent. But gains in equities were slim, the Dow Jones industrial average adding 0.2 percent, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index added 0.3 percent.
The dollar was flat with the dollar index climbing 0.18 percent to 80.10 on the International Exchange.
Gold added $9.60 or 0.5 percent, to close at $1,711.20 per troy ounce. Silver gained 51 cent or 1.6 percent to $32.13.
The euro fell to $1.2936 from Wednesday's $1.2973. Against the yen, the dollar rose to 80.34 yen from 79.81 yen.
Exploding whale video goes viral on Internet
Reindeer recovered after escaping from Santa during lighting ceremony