Wall Street stocks opened higher Thursday following mixed US economic data as the market awaited the outcome of Scotland's independence referendum.
Five minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 33.30 points (0.19 percent) to 17,190.15, building on Wednesday’s record after the Federal Reserve signaled it would keep interest rates near zero well into 2015.
The broad-based S&P 500 rose 5.14 (0.26 percent) to 2,006.71, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 13.54 (0.30 percent) to 4,575.73.
New claims for US unemployment insurance benefits fell last week, declining by 36,000 to 280,000 and returning to a improving labor-market trend.
But Commerce Department data showed a 14.4 percent drop in new US home construction in August and a 5.6 percent fall in building permits.
Investors are watching the Scotland vote, with some analysts predicting economic troubles to the region from a "yes" vote because of uncertainty over how Scotland would extricate itself from the rest of the United Kingdom.