Stock futures rose early Friday following a four-day winning streak on Wall Street as investors digested the closely watched January jobs report.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average pointed to an opening gain of more than 150 points. S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures also both traded higher in the premarket.
The Labor Department said the U.S. added 49,000 jobs in January, slightly below the 50,000 payrolls expected by economists. The unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, better than projections of 6.7%. December’s numbers were revised much lower, with the month posting a loss of 227,000 from the initial reading of 140,000 jobs lost.
“The jobs number was particularly underwhelming as far fewer jobs were expected,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer at Independent Advisor Alliance. “Ultimately, the stock market is anticipating continuing healing in the economy and has been moving higher because of Federal stimulus, which arguably is the bigger story.”
There have been signs of improvement in the labor market recovery. Thursday’s weekly jobless claims data showed 779,000 first time filers, the lowest since Nov. 28 and below the 830,000 expected by economists.
The S&P 500 rose for a fourth day to close at a record high on Thursday, boosted by tech and bank stocks. The Dow jumped more than 300 points in the previous session, while the Nasdaq Composite also reached a fresh high.
“The rally’s three pillars actually got stronger: Q4 earnings continue to dramatically exceed expectations, more stimulus is being poured into the economy, and the vaccination pace is accelerating,” Adam Crisafulli, founder of VItal Knowledge, said in a note.
With four straight days of gains, the major averages are on pace their best weekly performance since November. The blue-chip Dow has gained 3.6%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq have risen 4.2% and 5.4%, respectively. The market rebounded from last week’s sharp losses as the speculative trading frenzy dissipated.
Wall Street is in the middle of a solid earnings season. Of the 184 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings to date, 84.2% topped analyst expectations, according to Refinitiv.
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— CNBC’s Maggie Fitzgerald contributed reporting.
Correction: A previous version misstated the initial reading of December’s jobs report.