Wall Street has extended its recent record breaking run, after further signs of improvement in the US labour market.
Figures released by the ADP Research Institute show hiring in the private sector was surprisingly strong in February, with companies adding 198,000 employees.
On average, most economists were only tipping an extra 170,000 jobs to be added.
However, a report from the US Federal Reserve says conditions across the Fed's 12 districts have been lacklustre in recent weeks.
The Fed's so-called Beige Book says economic activity generally expanded at only a modest to moderate pace.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 42 points to close at a fresh record of 14,296.
The S&P 500 added 0.1 per cent to 1,541 and the Nasdaq lost 2 points to finish at 3,222.
It was a mixed session for European markets, with investors mindful of official data showing that the 17-nation eurozone sank further into recession in the last three months of 2012.
London's FTSE 100 index ended the session 4 points lower at 6,427.
It is set to be a reasonably flat start on the Australian share market.
In futures trading, the Share Price Index 200 was up 6 points to 5,128.
The Australian dollar had edged down to 102.36 US cents.
West Texas crude oil had edged down to $US90.03 cents a barrel, and Tapis was quoted at $US117.52.
Spot gold increased to $US1,578.86 an ounce.