Stocks Rise Following Encouraging Employment Data, Earnings

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Stocks rallied broadly higher on Wall Street Thursday as investors reviewed encouraging jobs data and a strong batch of corporate earnings reports.

The S&P 500 index rose 0.4 as of 3:25 p.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 191 points, or 0.6%, to 34,983 and the Nasdaq rose 0.6%, within striking distance of an all-time high..

The gains were broad in what has been a choppy week of trading, with technology companies leading the way. Banks made solid gains as long-term bond yields rose, which they rely on to charge higher interest rates on loans. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.21% from 1.18% late Wednesday.

Smaller company stocks outpaced the broader market in a sign that investors are feeling more confident about economic growth. The Russell 2000 rose 1.6%

Wall Street got another glimpse of the recovering jobs market after the Labor Department reported that unemployment claims — a proxy for layoffs — dropped last week by 14,000. The generally encouraging report follows a weak report from payroll processor ADP on Wednesday showing that the private sector added jobs at a much slower pace than expected in July.

The labor market has lagged other areas of the economy during the recovery from the virus pandemic. Investors will get a more comprehensive picture on Friday when the Labor Department releases its July jobs report.

Investors also weighed another batch of earnings reports. Underwear maker Hanesbrands jumped 6.1% after reporting solid second-quarter financial results. Booking Holdings rose 5.7% after it reported solid revenue.

Several companies that benefited from the shift in consumer habits during the height of the pandemic slipped after releasing disappointing results or forecasts. Online crafts marketplace Etsy fell 8% after giving investors a weak sales forecast as more people return to shopping in person. Video-streaming service Roku shed 4.2% after active accounts and streaming hours fell short of analysts’ forecasts.

Weber, the pioneering grill maker, jumped 18.3% in its stock market debut.

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA - Aug 5. 2021 - 3:31 PM ET




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