Stocks climbed to a record after surprisingly weak jobs data eased fears about higher inflation and a cutback in stimulus. The dollar slumped, while Treasuries were little changed.
All major groups in the S&P 500 rose, with energy, real-estate and industrial shares leading the charge. Earlier in the day, technology led equity gains as softer economic data drove investors into the perceived safety of pandemic darlings — megacaps flush with cash and stay-at-home stocks. A gauge of giant growth companies such as Apple Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. pared most of its advance.
The long-awaited employment data rattled markets, with payrolls up only 266,000 in April, trailing the projected 1 million surge. For several analysts, the figures may give a boost to President Joe Biden’s $6 trillion economic agenda and another reason for the Federal Reserve to keep its accommodative stance. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the report “underscores the long-haul climb back to recovery,” while retaining her expectation of a return to full employment next year.