Stocks rose Friday after a strong jobs report reassured investors about the health of the United States economy.
Employers added 128,000 jobs in October, more than economists had expected, the Labor Department said, and revisions to prior months’ data tacked on another 95,000 jobs.
October’s figure would have been stronger had it not been for a strike at General Motors, and for the layoffs of some 20,000 temporary census workers.
Investors have been focused on the impact of the trade war between Washington and Beijing and its impact on American businesses. Stocks have been climbing in the weeks since the two sides signaled progress toward reaching an interim deal that would provide farmers and companies some relief.
The anticipation of that deal, which President Trump refers to as a “Phase One” trade deal, and the fact that the Federal Reserve this week cut interest rates for the third time since July, have helped lift shares back to record territory. Low interest rates can boost economic activity. They also make stocks more attractive as investments relative to bonds.
The central bank has also increased its purchases of Treasury securities to ensure rates in short-term money markets remain low, a development that injects fresh money into financial markets and that can also help stocks.
Friday’s close was the third record for the S&P 500 this week, while the Nasdaq composite also rose to a record.
Treasury yields climbed as optimism rose in the economy and traders pared back bets that the Fed will cut interest rates in the next few months. The price of crude oil climbed, and gold dipped.
The stock market gains have come despite the fact that investors have plenty of other reasons to worry about the damage the trade war is causing.
Another report Friday showed that