- Job growth exceeds expectations
- Unemployment rate stable at 3.7%
- Ford falls into lower vehicle sales in November
- Dow Jones up 0.1%, S&P 500 down 0.12%, Nasdaq down 0.18%
NEW YORK (Reuters) – The S&P 500 closed slightly lower on Friday, despite major indexes rallying from their worst levels of the day, as the November payroll report fueled expectations that the Federal Reserve would maintain its course of raising interest rates to combat inflation.
The Labor Department’s jobs report showed non-farm payrolls rose by 263,000, above expectations of 200,000 and wage growth accelerated even as recession fears heightened.
The US Unemployment Rate remained unchanged as expected at 3.7%.
“Wage growth has been on an upward trend since August,” said Brian Jacobsen, chief investment analyst at Allspring Global Investment in Menomonie Falls, Wisconsin.
“We’ll have to see that trend reverse until the Fed feels comfortable with a pause. Until then, they’ll continue to ramp toward the pause.”
Investors have been looking for signs of weakness in the labor market, especially wages, as a precursor to a faster cooling in inflation that will enable the Federal Reserve to slow and eventually stop the current cycle of rate hikes.
Stocks rallied earlier in the week after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s comments about tapering interest rate hikes early in December.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) The Standard & Poor’s Index rose 34.87 points, or 0.1%, to 34,429.88. (.SPX) It lost 4.87 points, or 0.12%, to 4071.7 points, and the Nasdaq Composite Index (nineteenth) It fell 20.95 points, or 0.18%, to 11,461.50 points.
However, stocks ended the session at their lowest levels on a day that saw both major indexes fall by at least 1%, with the Dow managing to post slight gains.
said Sam Stovall, chief strategist at CFRA in New York.
“The market is starting to look across the valley and say, ‘Well, a year from now the Fed will probably be hanging out and considering a rate cut.'” “
The rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee meets Dec. 13-14, the final meeting in a volatile year that has seen the central bank attempt to stifle the fastest inflation rate since the 1980s with record rate hikes.
The major averages posted a second straight week of gains, with the S&P 500 up 1.13%, the Dow up 0.24%, and the Nasdaq up 2.1%.
Growth and technology companies such as Apple Inc (AAPL.O)down 0.34%, and Amazon (AMZN.O), from 1.43%, was pressured by concerns about rising interest rates but pared declines as US Treasury yields retreated throughout the day, far from previous highs. S&P 500 growth index (.IGX) Technology shares fell 0.29%. (.SPLRCT) It was among the worst performers among the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, down 0.55%.
Advance issues outnumbered declining issues on the NYSE by a ratio of 1.15 to 1; On Nasdaq, the 1.35-to-1 ratio favored gainers.
The S&P 500 posted 20 new highs in 52 weeks and no new lows. The Nasdaq Composite posted 86 new highs and 92 new lows.
(Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak) Editing by Cynthia Osterman
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