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Dow, S&P 500 Close at Records After Jobs Report Falls Short

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By Yasin Ebrahim

Investing.com – The Dow and S&P 500 closed at record highs Friday as an unexpectedly weak April jobs report cooled fears the Federal Reserve may be forced to tighten policy sooner than many expect to curb an overheating economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.66%, or 229 points, to end the day at a record close of 34,777.76. The S&P 500 was up 0.74% to close at record of 4,232.60, and the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.88%.

The U.S. economy created 266,000 jobs in April, below the 770,000 seen the prior month and well short of the 976,000 jobs economists had forecast.

The move cast doubt somewhat on the recovery, and eased fears that the Fed may have to start to talk about tapering its bond purchase.

"So much for 'a string' of 1 million payroll gains. That's what Powell wants to see before he's comfortable talking about tapering. The April miss makes it virtually impossible to get there by the June FOMC meeting," Jefferies (NYSE:JEF) said.

With the Fed's ongoing narrative of lower for longer rate environment strengthened, tech stocks moved higher as fears over a rapid pace of inflation and an overheating eased.

Google-parent Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), ended higher, while Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) closed below the flatline.

Corporate earnings, meanwhile, continued to pour in.

Peloton Interactive (NASDAQ:PTON) was flat as exercise equipment maker flagged for a $165 million hit from the recall of its treadmills and cut its outlook on sales and profit. The company also reported first quarter results that topped analyst estimates.

"[W]hile the recall saga is a tough pill to swallow for investors, the 30% correction is likely overdone," Wedbush said.

Beyond Meat (NASDAQ:BYND) slipped 7% after reporting a wider-than-expected loss of 42 cents per share as revenue fell on a pandemic-led dent in retail and restaurant demand.

"We continue to be optimistic that a post COVID-19 environment coupled with recent partnerships could lead to improved fundamentals down the road, but the N-T outlook remains still quite challenging, in our view," Oppenheimer said in a note.

Roku (NASDAQ:ROKU) delivered a sanguine outlook on the year ahead after reporting earnings and revenue that beat analyst estimates, sending it shares more than 11% higher.

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