Stock Rally Loses Steam After U.S. Reports Hiring Slowdown

FILE - In this Jan. 3, 2020, file photo the New York Stock Exchange is framed by the columns at Federal Hall National Memorial in New York. The U.S. stock market opens at 9:30 a.m. EST on Friday, Jan. 10. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

NEW YORK — Stocks edged higher in early trading on Wall Street Friday but lost some of their momentum from the previous day’s record-setting rally as investors digested a weak jobs report.

The government reported that U.S. employers added 145,000 jobs in December, short of economists’ forecasts. A solid jobs market has been a key force behind recent economic growth.

Every major index is still above the record highs set on Thursday. Investors were encourged by a cooling in the Iran-U.S. conflict and because a “Phase 1” trade deal with China is expected to be signed next week.

Technology stocks led the gains. Nvidia rose 1.6% and Qualcomm climbed 1.2%. Companies in the sector have been behind much of the broader gains this week as Wall Street grows more optimistic about trade. Chipmakers and other companies rely heavily on China for sales and supply chains.

Health care companies were also making solid gains. Intuitive Surgical rose 3.5% on a solid revenue update.

Banks and other financial companies broadly fell in the early going. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 1.84% from 1.85% late Thursday.

Energy stocks also slid as oil prices declined. Noble Energy fell 2.3%.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index rose 0.2% as of 10 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 25 points, or 0.1%, to 28,982. The Nasdaq rose 0.2%. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks fell 0.1%. Markets in Asia and Europe climbed.

WRONG ORDER: Grubhub plunged 8.4% after the denying reports that it was looking for a buyer. It’s the second-largest player in the increasingly competitive food-delivery business behind DoorDash.

MAX WOES: Boeing fell less than 1% after internal messages showed employees at the aircraft maker ridiculed those responsible for designing and overseeing the plane and apparently tried to hide problems from regulators. The plane has been grounded since March after two crashes killed 346 people.

EARNINGS AHEAD: Investors will have a chance to refocus on corporate earnings next week when several large banks and airlines report their financial results. JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Citigroup will all report earnings on Tuesday, along with Delta Air Lines.

Bank of America and Goldman Sachs will report results on Wednesday, along with insurer UnitedHealth Group. Railroad operator CSX will report results on Thursday.

By DAMIAN J. TROISE - Jan 10. 2020 - 10:32 AM ET

AP

 

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