Modest Gains Ahead of Friday's Jobs Report
07-Dec-17 16:25 ET
Dow +70.57 at 24211.48, Nasdaq +36.47 at 6812.83, S&P +7.71 at 2636.98
[BRIEFING.COM] U.S. equities recouped some of the losses registered earlier in the week on Thursday, with industrial shares pacing the advance.
The S&P 500 added 0.3%, as did the Dow Jones Industrial Average, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite outperformed, climbing 0.5%. Small caps showed relative strength, pushing the Russell 2000 higher by 0.8%. The S&P 500 will enter Friday's session with a week-to-date loss of 0.2%.
A Friday night deadline to secure government funding kept investors on their toes on Thursday. Lawmakers are expected to agree to a short-term extension that would fund the government for another two weeks, perhaps giving the GOP just enough time to pass its tax reform bill before having to take up the issue again.
President Trump met with congressional leaders on Thursday afternoon to discuss the issue, but no agreement was announced.
Separately, Bloomberg reported that the White House plans to release its long-promised infrastructure plan in early January. The report helped support the S&P 500's industrial sector (+0.9%), which was already strong amid another transport rally; the Dow Jones Transportation Average finished higher by 1.3%.
The top-weighted technology sector (+0.7%) also outperformed on Thursday, with Facebook (FB 180.14, +4.08) and Alphabet (GOOG 1030.93, +12.55) jumping 2.3% and 1.2%, respectively. Chipmaker Broadcom (AVGO 263.89, 0.00) started off strong after reporting upbeat quarterly earnings, but finished at its unchanged mark.
In total, nine of eleven sectors settled in the green, with the consumer staples sector (-0.9%) being the only group to finish with a sizable loss. Within the sector, Dow components Procter & Gamble (PG 90.10, -1.15) and Coca-Cola (KO 45.78, -0.67) dropped around 1.3% apiece.
U.S. Treasuries were flat through much of the session but eventually finished below their unchanged marks, with longer-dated issues showing particular weakness. The yield on the benchmark 10-yr Treasury note jumped five basis points to 2.38%, while the 2-yr yield climbed just one basis point to 1.81%.
Elsewhere, equities indices in the Asia-Pacific region settled Thursday mixed--with Japan's Nikkei (+1.5%) showing relative strength and China's Shanghai Composite (-0.7%) showing relative weakness--while the Euro Stoxx 50 jumped 0.4%.
Reviewing Thursday's economic data, which was limited to weekly Initial Jobless Claims and October Consumer Credit:
The Employment Situation Report for November (Briefing.com consensus +190,000) will be released at 8:30 ET on Friday, followed by the 10:00 ET release of October Wholesale Inventories (Briefing.com consensus -0.4%) and the preliminary reading of the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index for December (Briefing.com consensus 98.8).
- The latest weekly initial jobless claims count totaled 236,000, while the Briefing.com consensus expected a reading of 240,000. Today's tally was below the unrevised prior week count of 238,000. As for continuing claims, they declined to 1.908 million from a revised count of 1.960 million (from 1.957 million).
- The initial claims report has been glossed over by market participants who have their labor market sights set on the November Employment Situation report, which will be released before the open on Friday.
- The October Consumer Credit Report showed an increase of $20.5 billion (Briefing.com consensus +$17.0 billion). The September credit growth was revised to $19.2 billion from $20.8 billion.
- Nasdaq Composite +26.6% YTD
- Dow Jones Industrial Average +22.5% YTD
- S&P 500 +17.8% YTD
- Russell 2000 +12.0% YTD