The Dow industrials gained on Thursday on strong earnings reports from several components, while the Nasdaq fell on weakness in Ericsson and other technology names.

A number of Dow members reported better-than-expected results, with 3M Co , Travelers Cos Inc , AT&T Inc and McDonald's Corp all rallying on profit beats.

While more than 70 percent of S&P 500 companies have exceeded expectations so far this earnings season, according to Thomson Reuters data, investors are concerned the market has overvalued future prospects in a weak economic environment.

The market has risen so much that earnings would need to gain another 50 percent to make it fairly valued, said Joseph Battipaglia, market strategist at Stifel Nicolaus in Yardley, Pennsylvania. More and more, earnings aren't packing the same punch they used to.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 47.31 points, or 0.48 percent, to 9,996.89. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 0.23 points, or 0.02 percent, to 1,081.63. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> shed 7.70 points, or 0.36 percent, to 2,143.01.

Weighing on tech stocks, mobile phone group LM Ericsson posted weaker-than-expected earnings and lower sales, sending its U.S.-listed shares down 6.6 percent to $10.03.

Nokia Corp filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple Inc , prompting shares of the iPod maker to pare early gains. Apple stock fell 0.4 percent to $204.19.

Also pressuring the market was an unexpected increase in weekly jobless claims.

We've built up expectations that we're going to have a robust recovery, but the data isn't substantiating that, Battipaglia said.

Anything less than the idea of a V-shaped recovery, which would mean falling claims, throws cold water on the ongoing rally.

3M and Travelers gained after each raised their full-year outlook, sending 3M up 2.9 percent to $78.55, and Travelers up 5.4 percent to $50.60.

Fellow Dow component Merck & Co Inc fell 0.3 percent to $32.58 after it said first-quarter profit would be crimped by the seasonality of drug sales as it reported third-quarter earnings beat expectations.

United Parcel Service Inc slipped 1.2 percent to $56.44 after the shipping behemoth, an economic bellwether, reported sharply lower earnings and said its outlook for the holiday season remained unclear.

Trucking company Ryder System Inc was similarly pressured after it said soft demand for freight shipments was expected to continue weighing on results. Its stock fell 3.3 percent to $43.75.

(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)