Stocks rallied around the world on signs the global economic expansion that pushed benchmarks to records in 2017 remains intact. The dollar slipped and U.S. Treasuries declined as a private report showed U.S. employment strengthening.
The Dow Jones industrial average surpassed 25,000 for the first time, closing at 25,075.13, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index and the Nasdaq Composite reached all-time highs. Trading in S&P 500 stocks was not slowed by the storm lashing the East Coast, with volumes about 20% above the 30-day average.
Builders and carmakers led the advance in Europe, with most of the sectors in the Stoxx Europe 600 index strengthening. The MSCI Asia Pacific index hit a record after benchmarks in Tokyo closed at their highest in more than a quarter century.
In the U.S., companies added more workers to payrolls than expected in December, data from the ADP Research Institute showed. The economy probably added 190,000 workers in December, the median projection of economists surveyed by Bloomberg ahead of Labor Department data due Friday.
"You saw some very positive numbers coming out of the U.S. payrolls, which continues to show this economic growth story," said Francis Gannon, co-chief investment officer at Royce Funds. "That's what the market is running on. It's this idea that the economy is doing better than people think, and then you've got the tax reform on top of it, which is kind of adding fuel to the fire."
Core European bonds pared Wednesday's gains and the euro advanced toward a three-year high as data showed economic activity in the region accelerated to the fastest pace in almost seven years.
Meanwhile, commodities steadied after a record run of gains with oil trading close to its highest in three years. South Africa's rand led an advance in emerging-market currencies.