U.S. stocks rose on Wednesday, led by gains in industrial and technology companies as a weak dollar encouraged investors to bet on equities.

Stocks were headed for their fourth-straight day of gains, although the advance slipped after the Federal Reserve's Beige Book presented a mixed picture of the economy, failing to reassure investors.

The dollar fell to a 2009 low against other currencies on Wednesday. A soft U.S. currency makes U.S. products more competitive in overseas markets. Industrials, such as earth-moving equipment maker Caterpillar Inc , rose 2.9 percent to $48.35.

It seems like the lower the dollar goes, the stock market likes it, said Joe Saluzzi, co-manager of trading at Themis Trading in New Jersey.

Nasdaq cut its gains, pulled lower by shares of Apple Inc after Chief Executive Steve Jobs appeared at a company event after recovering from a liver transplant. Some analysts remarked on how thin the 54-year-old chief executive looked. Apple shares fell 1.3 percent to $170.60 after rising to $174 before the event.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 31.21 points, or 0.33 percent, at 9,528.55. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was up 5.73 points, or 0.56 percent, at 1,031.12. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was up 18.85 points, or 0.93 percent, at 2,056.62.

The dollar's fall pushed oil up, allowing U.S. crude to settle at $71.31 a barrel and helping gold to trade near $1,000 an ounce.

Dow's top boost was Boeing , which rose 1.94 percent to $50.45 after a senior executive said the planemaker expects global air cargo traffic to return to growth next year.

Goldman Sachs upgraded Illinois Tool Works to conviction buy and lifted its price target on Dow components General Electric , United Technologies and 3M Co .

GE shares gained 2.2 percent to $14.82 while Illinois Tool was up 4.3 percent to $43.65. The S&P Industrials sector <.GSPI> gained 1.13 percent and was the top percentage gainer among S&P sectors.

The Fed's Beige Book survey showed half of Federal Reserve districts saw evidence the U.S. economy had improved by the end of August, but labor markets remained weak and retail sales were flat overall.

(Reporting by Angela Moon, Editing by Kenneth Barry)