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U.S. stocks gain despite soft July jobs report; Dow rises 0.19%

Published 08/02/2013, 04:27 PM
Updated 08/02/2013, 04:28 PM
- - U.S. stocks rose on Friday despite a disappointing July jobs report, as investors took the data as a sign the Federal Reserve will continue stimulating the economy with its monthly bond-buying program, which pushes up equities prices by keeping long-term borrowing costs down.

At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 0.19%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.16%, while the Nasdaq Composite index rose 0.38%.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the U.S. economy added 162,000 jobs in July, missing expectations for an increase of around 189,000.

The report also revealed that the U.S. unemployment rate ticked down to 7.4% in July from 7.6% the previous month. Analysts had expected the unemployment rate to slip to 7.5% last month.

The numbers quashed expectations for the Federal Reserve to begin tapering its USD85 billion monthly bond-buying program in the near future, which seeks to spur recovery by keeping long-term interest rates low.

The Fed is due to meet in September to discuss policy anew, though expectations began to build that monetary authorities may wait until December to begin tapering the stimulus program and let the economy stand on its own.

Investors stuck with stocks on Friday amid sentiments that Wall Street will enjoy monetary support for longer than once expected.

Leading Dow Jones Industrial Average performers included Hewlett-Packard, up 2.94%, DuPont, up 2.50%, and Home Depot, up 2.01%.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average's worst performers included UnitedHealth Group, down 1.31%, Chevron, down 1.21%, and Coca-Cola, down 0.84%.

European indices, meanwhile, finished mixed.

After the close of European trade, the EURO STOXX 50 rose 0.08%, France's CAC 40 rose 0.07%, while Germany's DAX 30 finished down 0.05%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 finished down 0.51%.

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