Stocks surge to new highs after hiring climbs

After weeks of conflicting signals about the economy's strength, Wall Street was cheered by a surprisingly strong jobs report and the wave of buying drove three indexes through major milestones. The Dow punched through 15,000 before easing back. The S&P 500 closed above 1,600 for the first time. The Russell 2000 also reached a record high. US firms added 165,000 workers in April and more in February and March than earlier estimated. The jobless rate fell to 7.5 percent, the lowest in four years. Companies that stand to benefit most from an upturn led stocks higher. U.S. Steel, GE, and Dow Chemical led the way.