After showing a strong upward move earlier in the session, stocks continue to see notable strength in late morning trading on Thursday. The major averages all remain in positive territory, adding to the gains posted in the previous session.

Transportation stocks are turning in some of the market's best performances, as traders express some optimism about signs of stabilization in the economy. Significant strength is visible among railroad stocks, which saw notable weakness on Wednesday.

A variety of other sectors have also shown strong upward moves over the course of the morning, with health insurance, steel, healthcare provider, and housing stocks posting notable gains.

On the other hand, banking stocks have moved back to the downside after ending the previous session mostly higher, limiting the upside for the broader markets. Tobacco stocks are also giving back some ground after trending higher in recent sessions.

In recent trading, the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose to a new high for the session, although it has given back some ground in the past few minutes. The Nasdaq currently remains up 29.50 at 1,558.45, while the Dow is up 44.45 at 7,794.26 and the S&P 500 is up 7.04 at 820.92.

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