Stocks turned positive after a weak open and added to gains on Wednesday after Midwest business activity grew more than expected.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 21.17 points, or 0.21 percent, to 9,891.47. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 4.60 points, or 0.44 percent, to 1,045.84. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> added 16.80 points, or 0.79 percent, to 2,151.98.
The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago business barometer fell to 59.1 in June from 59.7 in May, and economists had forecast a June reading of 59.0.
But the employment component of the index rose to 54.2 from 49.2 in May, slightly offsetting the negative sentiment brought by a much lower than expected number of jobs created in the private sector, as showed in a separate reading.
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)