Stocks climb, S&P 500 touches record after better jobs data

The S&P 500 managed a 1.1% gain, while the Dow industrials eked out only the thinnest of fractional advances.

The Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) was up 2.33 points, or 0.04 percent, at 6,212.53.

Yet another sign that the job market continues to improve is driving stocks and bond yields higher on Thursday. The small-cap Russell 2000 index added 7 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,377. First Data closed up 1.1 per cent. The Dow Jones Small-Cap Growth TSM Index closed at 8,299.98 for a loss of 69.70 points or 0.83%.

European stocks opened flat to slightly lower on Wednesday as a spate of worries surrounding Greece, Britain and Italy offset the better-than-expected manufacturing data from China.

The private sector jobs numbers are more volatile than the non-farm payroll figures out tomorrow, but the markets are seeing them as a positive indicator for the economy. Musk, who is on Trump's manufacturing jobs council, joins Apple CEO Tim Cook and Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris, both of whom have also opposed the USA leaving the accord. The index is now 3.3 per cent below a year ago, which is the first year-on-year decline since last December.

OH, DEERE: Deere shares rose $2.20, or 1.8 percent, to $124.66 after it agreed to buy Wirtgen Group, a German maker of road-construction equipment for about 4.6 billion euros, or $5.2 billion. Japanese shares fell as the dollar hit two-week lows against the yen. The report of regional conditions labeled the USA economy growth as "modest to moderate" through late May. In addition, claims from Libya that production had recovered to above its long-term ceiling of 800,900 barrels helped send crude prices down nearly 3%, to $48.32 a barrel, leaving it down 2% for the month.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 10.41) closed up 0.03 point, or 0.3%, but lost 3.8% for the month.

The offshore drilling firm's stock shot up 27% to US$10.30 after sector peer Ensco offered 1.6 of its shares for every Atwood share, valuing each Atwood share at US$10.72.

Cybersecurity company Symantec rose 1.5 percent following an upgrade from Barclays. This helped pressure the U.S. Dollar against a basket of currencies.

  • Zachary Reyes