Trade optimism, solid Chinese data send US markets higher – News

Markets in the US ended the week on a high note after news of progress between China and the US on trade, steady jobs growth in October and a surprise uptick in Chinese manufacturing [File: Brendan McDermid/Reuters]

Stocks in the United States rallied to close out the trading week on Friday as the S&P 500 set a closing record for the third time in five days after an upbeat US jobs report and data on Chinese manufacturing eased concerns about slowing global growth.

Job growth slowed less than forecast in October, as a drag from a strike at General Motors was made up for in other areas of the labour market, while job gains in the prior two months were stronger than previously thought.

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“A nice surprise, and also there were upwards revisions for September and August,” said Jeff Kravetz regional investment strategist at US Bank Wealth Management in Phoenix.

“To us, that is an indication of the resiliency of the economy this late in the cycle and for today, that is what is putting investors at ease and putting them on a risk-on mode here.”

The strong jobs number helped overshadow a report that showed the manufacturing sector contracted for a third straight month.

Along with the S&P’s new high, the Nasdaq eclipsed its July closing record. The S&P has climbed for four straight weeks, its longest streak since February, while the Nasdaq has gained in five straight weeks as quarterly earnings have come in stronger than anticipated and US-China trade rhetoric has appeared to be productive. The Dow sits fewer than 12 points from a closing record.

Before the jobs report, the sentiment was supported by data showing China manufacturing activity unexpectedly expanded in October, easing concerns about a slowdown in demand from the world’s

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