Stock market heads higher in early trading; McDonald's stock surges after CEO steps down

The U.S. stock market is opening slightly higher as investors digest a mix of corporate and economic news.

McDonald's stock climbed 3 percent following news late Wednesday that its CEO is stepping down.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 42 points, or 0.3 percent, to 17,238 shortly after the open Thursday. The Standard & Poor's 500 climbed less than one point, or 0.01 percent, to 2,002. The Nasdaq slipped four points, less than 0.1 percent, to 4,633.

Before the market opened, the government reported that weekly claims for unemployment benefits dropped to 15-year low last week.

Prices rose for U.S. government bonds, lifting yields up from their lows for the year. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note edged up to 1.75 percent.