The Dow Jones posted triple-digit gains in early trading on Thursday after positive economic data at home and abroad boosted sentiment.
An hour after opening, the index had advanced more than 215 points, or 2.18%, to 10,114.56, with every stock in the black.
A flurry of economic data boosted optimism across the globe, with London's FTSE reversing earlier losses to gain 46 points, or 0.92%, to 5,133.77.
In the US, data revealed the nation recorded a $40.3bn trade deficit last month, slightly narrower than the $41bn economists had projected. Elsewhere, officials said jobless claims fell 3,000 to 456,000 last week.
Meanwhile, a report showed China's exports jumped almost 50% in May from a year earlier, the biggest gain in six years, while Germany's highest court rejected a request from a German lawmaker to block the immediate granting of guarantees from the eurozone's financial safety package.
In New York, Caterpillar gained 4.5% to $59.35 while Chevron advanced 3.8% to $73.47.
In London, BP continued to toil, losing more than 18p, or 4.67%, to 373.25p. Home Retail Group, down 4.58% to 227.1p, and Royal Dutch Shell B, down 1.15% to £16.83, also suffered.
However, the losses were more than offset by 5% gains for technology designer ARM Holdings and fashion house Burberry Group. Miners Eurasian Natural Resources and Xstrata also advanced.
The increase in minimum AE contributions has had little impact on opt-out rates - with cessations after April increasing by less than two percentage points, data from The Pensions Regulator (TPR) shows.
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