* Jobless claims down to lowest level in more than a year
* New home sales rise to one-year high
* Volatility index hits 15-month low
* Indexes up: Dow 0.3 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.3 pct
* For up-to-the-minute market news, click [STXNEWS/US]
(Updates to midday, changes byline)
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, Nov 25 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks edged up on Wednesday after data pointed to stabilizing labor and housing markets, considered two big headwinds slowing down a recovery.
Sales of newly built U.S. single-family homes rose to their highest level in a year in October. Also, consumer spending increased more than expected, while new claims for jobless benefits fell sharply, suggesting the recovery was gaining traction. For details, see [ID:nN25346193]
It “looks like people are spending again a little bit more, which is bad for the savings rate but good for the retailers and good for the economy,” said Todd Leone, head of listed trading at Cowen & Co New York.
The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was up 33.64 points, or 0.32 percent, at 10,467.35. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX added 3.37 points, or 0.30 percent, at 1,109.02. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC gained 7.45 points, or 0.34 percent, at 2,176.63.
The market also got a lift from a weaker U.S. dollar, which fell 0.7 percent to an almost 15-month low against a basket of currencies .DXY after U.S. Federal Reserve minutes showed policymakers saw the dollar’s recent decline as “orderly.” [ID:nGEE5AO19B]
As investors assess the strength of the recovery, they’re also questioning whether the S&P 500’s 22 percent rise this year still has legs.
The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index .VIX, a favorite pulse of investor sentiment, sank to its lowest intraday level in 15 months. The VIX dropped as low as 20.05 Wednesday.
Tiffany & Co TIF.N rose 4 percent to $43.49 after the luxury retailer reported third-quarter earnings that beat expectations and raised its full-year profit view. [ID:nN25324014]
Deere & Co DE.N gained 3 percent to $53.84, erasing earlier losses after the world’s largest maker of tractors and harvesters reported quarterly results. [ID:nN25342884].
Reporting by Angela Moon; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe