Stocks finished little changed after the latest jobs report showed that the US economy lost more jobs than it created for the first time in seven years.
The Dow and the S&P 500 dipped into the red, while the Nasdaq just squeezed into a new all-time high close — by 0.07%.
First up, the scoreboard:
- Dow: 22,745.27, -30.12, (-0.13%)
- S&P 500: 2,545.37, -6.70, (-0.26%)
- Nasdaq: 6,590.18, +4.82, (+0.07%)
- US dollar index: 93.88, (-0.08%)
1. The US economy shed jobs for the first time since 2010 amid the damage caused by the hurricanes Harvey and Irma. On the positive side, the unemployment rate fell to a new post-recession low, labour-force participation increased, and wages jumped. Notably, Puerto Rico is not included in the report.
2. The hospitality and leisure industry lost 111,000 jobs in September, making it the largest loss for the sector since the start of the jobs report in 1939. Within the hospitality industry, food-service jobs were particularly affected, with a net decline of 105,000 jobs.
3. Gary Cohn said the White House was “excited” with the latest jobs report. “We at the White House are very excited about the numbers,” Cohn said during an interview with Bloomberg TV. “You’re right, there is some noise in the number because of the hurricane, and as you said you discount that noise out.”
4. Traders weren’t too phased by the jobs report, either. The S&P 500 slipped just 0.2% in early trading, suggesting that investors were already taking into account the one-time effect of the two hurricanes.
5. In other news, Costco crushed earnings — but its stock cratered anyway over retail apocalypse fears. At the root of Costco’s stock woes was a reduction in the firm’s already razor-thin gross margins. That decline is just the latest manifestation of an industry-wide phenomenon that’s seen the likes of Amazon put major pressure on grocers — and retailers at large — to keep prices low.
6. Snap climbed after a report of huge engagement growth. Shares were up about 1.7% Friday afternoon after a report from Axios said Snapchat saw 40% growth in its Stories engagement since launching its Snap Maps feature.
Lots of economic data on Friday: Nonfarm payrolls: -33,000; unemployment rate: 4.2%; participation rate: 63.1%; average hourly earnings: 0.5% month-over-month and 2.9% year-over-year.