Wall Street rallied Friday amid hopes that inflation will continue to cool. All the major indexes rose more than 2% for the day and between 1% and 2% for the week, per CNBC. The Dow rose 699 points on Friday, or 2.1%, to 33,629; the benchmark S&P 500 rose 86 points, or 2.2%, to 3,895; and the tech-dominated Nasdaq rose 264 points, or 2.5%, to 10,569. Markets worldwide got an initial jolt from the US jobs report. On the upside for them, it showed workers’ wage gains are slowing, which could mean easing pressure on the nation’s high inflation. On the downside, it also showed hiring across the job market may still be too strong for the Fed’s liking, even after its fusillade of rate hikes last year, per the AP.
A separate report also showed that activity in US services industries surprisingly contracted last month, the first time that's happened since 2020. Analysts said that's likely due in part to the rate hikes already pushed through by the Fed, and the weakness could also reduce pressure on the nation's inflation. That report helped steady the stock market following a shaky morning and sent it ripping higher again. After opening the day with an initial pop of 1.2%, the S&P 500 lost almost all of it within minutes as Wall Street struggled with how to interpret the jobs report and what it means for the Fed and rates. Of note Friday, retailer Costco Wholesale jumped 7.1% for one of the biggest gains in the S&P 500 after it reported stronger sales for December.
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