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US Stocks Fall After Weak Jobs Data, Trump COVID-19 Diagnosis

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Key Points

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 0.5 percent at 27,682.81.
  • The broad-based S&P 500 dropped 1.0 percent to 3,348.44, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index tumbled 2.2 percent to 11,075.02.
  • US stock futures plunged on Trump announcement’s of the positive COVID-19 test early Friday morning but recovered somewhat during the session.
  • Visit The Financial Today’s homepage for more stories.

New York, United States — Wall Street stocks fell Friday following a weak US jobs report and President Donald Trump’s shock announcement that he tested positive for coronavirus.

Those negatives were offset somewhat by more encouraging commentary from Washington policymakers about a long-anticipated stimulus package, limiting equity market losses.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 0.5 percent at 27,682.81.

The broad-based S&P 500 dropped 1.0 percent to 3,348.44, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index tumbled 2.2 percent to 11,075.02.

US stock futures plunged on Trump announcement’s of the positive COVID-19 test early Friday morning but recovered somewhat during the session.

Trump experienced only “mild symptoms” Friday after contracting COVID-19, a top aide said, but the Republican’s already struggling re-election campaign was grounded.

The Labor Department reported that the United States added 661,000 jobs in September, below expectations, and less than half of the gains seen in August, even as the unemployment rate dipped to 7.9 percent.

“It’s a bad jobs report and likely there’s a much worse one coming next month,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities, who noted layoff announcements this week from Disney, Allstate, and other companies that were not counted for September.

Hogan said upbeat comments from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi about ongoing talks with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had lifted hopes that Washington may still be able to produce a meaningful stimulus package.

Stocks fell in September as the stimulus odds receded, but would benefit if a major fiscal package picked up momentum, Hogan said.

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