US STOCKS-Nasdaq breaks above all-time closing record
* Nasdaq breaches closing record last hit in March 2000
* Indexes: Dow up 0.5 pct, S&P up 0.5 pct, Nasdaq up 0.6 pct (Updates to afternoon trading)
By Caroline Valetkevitch
April 23 (Reuters) - The Nasdaq Composite, the U.S. market index most closely associated with technology stocks, jumped to a 15-year high on Thursday, putting it on track for its first record high close since the technology bubble burst.
The Nasdaq jumped as high as 5,069.17, led by shares of Apple, which has been among the biggest positive influences on the index in recent years. The index's last record close of 5,048.62 was hit on March 10, 2000.
The S&P 500 was also on track for a record closing high. It hit its most recent record close of 2,117.39 on March 2.
Rapid growth in biotechnology companies such as Gilead and social media firms like Facebook, driven by the popularity of mobile computing, have also helped to lift the Nasdaq to its current levels.
Shares of Gilead were up 1 percent at $105.23, while Facebook, which late Wednesday posted quarterly revenue that missed analysts estimates, was down 0.8 percent at $83.99.
Shares of Apple, the most valuable company in the United States, were up 0.9 percent at $129.72, while Google was up 1.5 percent at $547.17. Continuación...