BANGKOK (AP) - Asian stock markets rose today, finding renewed strength from a fall in U.S. jobless benefit claims and an interest rate cut by the European Central Bank intended to boost the region's ebbing economy.
Investors jittery over the state of the U.S. economy took heart from a U.S. Labor Department report that said applications for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in more than four years. That calmed fears that intensified Wednesday following the release of reports showing lackluster hiring and factory output.
Markets in Japan were closed for a public holiday.
Benchmark crude oil fell but remained near $94 per barrel. The dollar fell against the euro but rose against the yen.