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Stocks Rally Strongly Into The Close On Jobs Report; Microsoft Tops Buy Point | Stock News & Stock Market Analysis

Stocks closed sharply higher and the Nasdaq composite made a new high after Wall Street applauded a strong jobs report.

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The Nasdaq climbed 1.8%, topping its previous high on Jan. 26. Microsoft (MSFT), one of the largest Nasdaq components, edged above a 96.17 buy point but volume was unimpressive. Still, major growth stocks were in favor.

The S&P 500 added 1.7% and made its first close above the important 50-day moving average since Feb. 27.

The Dow Jones industrial average kept pace with the other indexes, also rising 1.8%. But the Dow failed to top its 50-day line. Still, major stock indexes rallied strongly into the close.

Small caps would not be denied, as the Russell 2000 climbed 1.5%. The index is about 1% from a new high. The Dow transports surged 2.6% thanks to strength in trucking, logistics, rail and other transportation stocks.

Volume rose from Thursday’s totals, based on preliminary figures. Winners led losers by 12-to-5 on the NYSE and by 13-to-5 on the Nasdaq.

Bullish breadth was evident throughout the market as most sectors climbed. Financials led after the job surge caused bond yields to rise. SPDR Financial ETF (XLF) and iShares U.S. Broker Dealer ETF (IAI) rose more than 2%. The SPDR S&P Bank ETF (KBE) added nearly 2%.

U.S. employers added 313,000 jobs in February, well above forecasts of 205,000. The unemployment rate held at 4.1%, all while wage growth increased just enough to keep inflation worries in check.


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Leading stocks participated broadly as well. The Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) jumped 1.5%.

IBD 50 member Lam Research (LRCX) broke out of a double bottom base with a 218.58 entry, but the pattern is a risky late-stage base. Total System Services (TSS) topped an 90.02 buy point but volume was weak.

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