Stock index futures held gains on Thursday after government data showed the number of people filing initial claims for jobless benefits fell in the latest week.

* S&P 500 index futures were up 5.50 points and above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 56 points, while Nasdaq 100 futures gained 5.50 points. (Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)