US STOCKS-S&P 500, Dow scale new highs on upbeat data, ECB moves
* ECB cuts rates, to buy asset-backed securities
* BP shares slump after court ruling
* ADP payrolls short of estimates, initial claims up
* Ciena stumbles after results, outlook
* Indexes up: Dow 0.23 pct, S&P 0.26 pct, Nasdaq 0.33 pct (Updates to afternoon, adds new comments, details on BP)
By Akane Otani
NEW YORK, Sept 4 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks climbed on Thursday after the European Central Bank cut interest rates and announced a new plan to stimulate the euro zone economy, and as a flurry of data pointed to a steadily improving U.S. economy.
Both the Dow and S&P 500 touched record intraday highs after the ECB's surprise move, with the benchmark index hitting a high of 2,011.17. Investors had hoped for decisive action from the ECB to thwart deflation and spur stagnating growth in the euro zone, a key trading partner of the U.S.
"The last time the ECB president made such a strong statement back in 2012, when he said he would take whatever action necessary to support the economy, it stabilized risk assets across the globe. I think this is a very similar moment," said Anwiti Bahuguna, senior portfolio manager for Columbia Management in Boston. Continuación...