U.S. stock index futures remained largely unchanged following the latest round of economic reports, with the S&P 500 within 2 points of hitting its all-time closing high.
Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan told CNBC the "too big to fail" problem with banks is getting worse not better.
Asian equities could deliver gains of 20 percent by the end of the year, according to HSBC.
For more than a decade, good times in such markets as stocks and real estate were bad news for the greenback. Now, though, the dollar is benefiting from the stock market's surge to new highs and the improvement in U.S. economic data.
Japanese shares hit a four-and-a-half-year high on Friday on optimism over monetary stimulus, while other Asian markets recovered from previous losses after a strong U.S jobless claims report revealed that a recovery was well under way in the world's largest economy.
Bank of England Governor Mervyn King said on Thursday that the central bank was not seeking any further fall in the level of sterling which now appeared to be fairly valued.
Stocks could end the week with a record close in the S&P 500, setting up the index for a run at its all time high in the not too distant future.
The dollar fell from a seven-month high against a basket of currencies on Thursday as some traders bet it may have rallied too quickly.
Brent crude traded around $109 a barrel, weighed by a subdued outlook for demand growth in top consumers the United States and China, while a firm dollar added pressure on prices.
Long-dated Treasurys prices slipped slightly on Thursday after improved labor market data and stock market gains undermined the appeal of lower-risk government debt.
Gold inched higher, recouping some earlier losses in line with a firmer euro and bouts of physical buying in some parts of Asia, although signs the U.S. economy is on a better footing were however curbing further gains.
European shares rose on Thursday, resuming the two-week rally that has propelled indexes to multi-year highs.
The top U.S. derivatives regulator has started internal discussions on whether the daily setting of gold and silver prices in London is open to manipulation, the Wall Street Journal reported.
A long term bear market is around the corner and will last until 2018, with the Dow losing up to 30 percent of its current value, Kerry Balenthiran, author of "The 17.6 Years Stock Market Cycle", told CNBC.
Emerging markets appear to be losing out as investors pile into developed markets on hopes of better economic conditions.
Economists are boosting their outlooks for U.S. growth, but the stock market seems to be stalling after months of gains on expectations for a better economy.
Gold fell on Wednesday as a strong U.S. retail sales report boosted optimism about the U.S. economy.
The dollar climbed to a seven-month high against a basket of currencies on Wednesday as robust U.S. retail sales data bolstered prospects for the world's largest economy.
U.S. Treasury debt prices slipped on news of stronger-than-expected retail sales in February, but nearly all the day's losses were erased after the Treasury's sale of 10-year notes drew strong demand.
Oil traded mixed on Wednesday, but expectations of steady global consumption growth held Brent crude above $109 a barrel.