Stocks diverged at the starting bell, then gained strength Friday, as a steep miss in April jobs data sent tech stocks sharply higher. Miners advanced, as strong data from China helped boost copper prices to a new record high. Earnings winners Roku and Spectrum Brands saw little effect from the payrolls miss. Meanwhile, Nike jumped to the top of the Dow Jones today, retaking a key level of technical support.
The Nasdaq Composite swept up 0.95% at the open, extending its rebound from the 50-day line. The S&P 500 climbed 0.5% on the stock market today. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shook off an brief, early loss and climbed 0.35%.
The Labor Department reported non-farm employers added 266,000 new workers in April, sharply below March’s 916,000 hirings and fraction of the 938,000 new positions projected by economists. The unemployment rate ticked higher, to 6.1%, up from 6.0% in March and disappointing estimates for a decline to 5.8%.
Expedia (EXPE) muscled to the top of both the Nasdaq 100 and the S&P 500, up 5.9% as a handful of analysts scrambled to raised their price targets after the company reported strong first-quarter results late Thursday. The highest target, from Wells Fargo, was at 235.
Microchip Technology (MCHP) swung up 2.3%. Both Morgan Stanley and Mizuho raised their price targets on the stock after fiscal fourth-quarter earnings came in well above forecasts, and management hoisted its first-quarter earnings guidance more than expected.
DraftKings (DKNG) cooled its premarket rally, rising 0.6% in opening trade as investors dug in after what appeared to be a strong revenue beat for the company’s first quarter. DraftKings stock currently has no valid buy points, but is testing support at its 200-day moving average.
Ore miners were also stocks to watch early Friday, as copper prices jumped almost 3%, after taking a 2% leap on Thursday. Copper futures on Friday traded at $4.72 a pound — a record high — up 34% for the year and 3% above the commodity’s prior record from January 2011.
Nike Leads Dow Jones Today
Nike (NKE) led the early action on the Dow Jones today, surging 3.4% after holding its quarterly dividend steady at 27.5 cents. The stock currently yields about 0.8%.
The early move sent Nike shares back above their 50-day moving average for the first time since March. The decisive move, in very heavy trade, marked a bullish change of direction in the stock’s four-month consolidation.
Salesforce rose 1.8%, Apple notched a 1.3% gain. Apple is aiming to extend its rebound from 50-day support to a third day, and sits below a 135.63 buy point in a…
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