Jobs report helped stock marketNews added by Benefits Pro on January 8, 2013

Benefits Pro

Joined: September 07, 2011

By Amanda McGrory-Dixon

As the private sector added 168,000 new jobs in December, which is 13,000 more than expected in a Bloomberg poll of economists, it helped the stock market Friday, Jan. 4, according to Clark Yingst, chief market analyst of Joseph Gunnar, a full-service securities and investment banking firm.

Also supporting the stock market was that falling from the fiscal cliff has been put off for another two months, Yingst says. Taking a look at the sectors, nine of the 10 major industries in the Standard & Poor’s 500 finished in the black Friday while only one was in the red. Specifically, technology was the only losing sector with a minus 0.72 percent, and Apple Computer/AAPL suffered a 2.79 percent drop.

Among Friday’s top four performers are basic materials, financials, energy and industrials with gains ranging between 0.69 percent and 1.26 percent. On average, the gain of these sectors is 1.05 percent, which is more than more than twice the 0.49 percent advance in Standard & Poor’s 500.

Although by a smaller margin, telecom services and utilities also performed well Friday. Telecom’s gain hit 0.62 percent while utilities reached 0.54 percent Friday.

Additional drops in the benchmark ten-year bond faced a short-term technical breakdown last week, cutting the relative yields in while detracting from the appeal of dividend payers. This includes telecom services and utilities. Still, tax on common stock dividends was smaller than expected, returning investor interest for both sectors.

Although many economists and strategists are pleased with private nonfarm payrolls in the United States in December, investors do not seem to feel the same. Consumer goods and services came in higher Friday but lagged the gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 and fell below Standard & Poor’s Midcap 400 as it did not advance two-thirds as much as the parent. The report could have reduced enthusiasm for growth that was better than expected in private nonfarm payrolls in December.

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