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Wall Street Up as Cyclical Stocks Gain After Jobs Report

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New York: 

US stocks rose on Friday, with major indices extending a rally that has taken them to repeated records, after the May payrolls report provided the latest confirmation that economic conditions were improving.

The day's gains were broad and led by cyclical sectors, which outperform in times of economic expansion. Financials were the day's biggest gainers, up 0.5 per cent, followed by consumer discretionary names, up 0.4 per cent. The only S&P 500 sectors that fell on the day were telecom and utilities, both of which are defensive groups.

About 217,000 jobs were added in May, slightly fewer than expected, while the unemployment rate held steady at 6.3 per cent. This is the first time job growth has topped 200,000 for four consecutive months since January 2000.

The S&P 500 is on track for its tenth rise of the past 12 sessions. If it ends at a record on Friday, which it is on track to do, that will mark its sixth record in the past seven sessions.

"The market's momentum will eventually wane, but fundamentals look OK to fairly strong, and I'll take strong economic data like this any day," said Andres Garcia-Amaya, global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Funds in New York, which has $400 billion in assets under management.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 47.21 points, or 0.28 per cent, to 16,883.32.

The S&P 500 gained 5.09 points, or 0.26 per cent, to 1,945.55.

The Nasdaq Composite added 16.53 points, or 0.38 per cent, to 4,312.75.

For the week, the Dow is up 1 per cent, the S&P is up 1.1 per cent and the Nasdaq is up 1.6 per cent. Both the Dow and S&P are on track for a third straight weekly advance, while the Nasdaq is on track for its fourth.

The CBOE Volatility index fell 2.5 per cent, building on its decline of 3.3 per cent on Thursday. The "fear index" has been at historically low levels for several weeks, which has some worried the market is complacent. Light trading volume on positive market days has also been viewed as a possible warning signal.

Mining equipment maker Joy Global Inc jumped 2.6 per cent, building on its 6.7 per cent rally on Thursday on the back on strong results. The stock is on track for its biggest weekly gain since August 2012.

Peabody Energy Corp was the biggest percentage decliner on the S&P 500, down 2.2 per cent to $16.21 after Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to 'neutral'.

Hertz Global Holdings Inc tumbled 10 per cent to $27.39 after the company said it would restate financial results for the past three years to correct accounting errors from 2011.

Novavax Inc was the Nasdaq's most active stock, down 7.5 per cent to $4.18 in heavy volume a day after a public offering of 25 million common shares was priced at a discount to its Thursday close.

Copyright @ Thomson Reuters 2014

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