After jobs report, a late push takes stocks to new records

NEW YORK (AP) — A solid pickup in hiring last month helped push the stock market to record highs Friday. The gains were driven by energy, technology and industrial companies.

The Labor Department told investors what they had hoped to hear: employers added more workers last month after a sluggish beginning to the year.

Energy companies rose as the price of oil recovered from losses earlier in the week. Media companies like CBS and Charter Communications recovered from their losses earlier in the week. Technology companies rose, but IBM missed out after billionaire investor Warren Buffett said he sold a large part of his stake in the company.

After a quiet morning, stocks rose in the afternoon and the S&P 500 finished above the all-time high close it set March 1.

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Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist at Wells Fargo’s Investment Institute, said stocks benefited from the combination of greater hiring and slower wage growth because if wages rise too quickly it will affect corporate profits.

“The market is likely to be concerned about wage gains and the impact on corporate margins as we move into 2018,” he said.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index climbed 9.77 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,399.29. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 55.47 points, or 0.3 percent, to 21,006.94.

The Nasdaq composite jumped 25.42 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,100.76, which beat a record it set earlier this week. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks added 8.15 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,397.

Employers in the United States added 211,000 jobs in April, according to the Labor Department. That comes after slow hiring over the first three months of the year and sluggish economic growth.

Energy companies bounced back as the price of oil steadied. After two steep losses in three days, benchmark U.S. crude oil jumped 70 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $46.22 a barrel in New York….

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