NEW YORK, March 9 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks ended higher after wavering between gains and losses Thursday, after the European Central Bank (ECB) decided to keep key interest rates unchanged.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 2.46 points, or 0.01 percent, to 20,858.19. The S&P 500 added 1.89 points, or 0.08 percent, to 2,364.87. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 1.26 points, or 0.02 percent, to 5,838.81.
The Eurozone base interest rate, namely the interest rate on main refinancing operations, will remain at 0.00 percent, with the marginal lending rate and deposit rate remaining at 0.25 percent and minus 0.40 percent respectively.
ECB President Mario Draghi told a press conference that ECB continues to expect the key interests to remain at present or lower levels for an extended period of time.
Besides, ECB reaffirmed to follow the course determined by the Governing Council Meeting last December, namely to proceed with asset purchase programme (QE) at the current monthly pace of 80 billion euros (84.7 billion U.S. dollars) until the end of this month and of 60 billion euros from April onward, until the end of December 2017 or beyond if necessary.
On the economic front, in the week ending March 4, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 243,000, an increase of 20,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 223,000, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday.
The four-week moving average was 236,500, an increase of 2,250 from the previous week's unrevised average of 234,250.
In a separate report, the department announced that prices for U.S. imports advanced 0.2 percent in February, while U.S. export prices rose 0.3 percent. Enditem