S&P, Dow Flat After Jobs Data; Tech Stocks Lift Nasdaq

The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average were little changed on Friday after a mixed jobs report, while tech stocks lifted the Nasdaq to a record intraday high.

The Nasdaq was on track to be the biggest gainer in Wall Street's first trading week of the year, rising about 2.2 percent. The S&P was set to gain 1.3 percent and the Dow 0.6 percent.

A Labor Department report showed that the public and private sectors together added fewer-than-expected jobs last month but average hourly earnings ticked up, suggesting sustained momentum in the labor market.

The report adds to a recent spate of robust economic data across sectors including manufacturing and automobiles. This, coupled with President-elect Donald Trump's fiscal stimulus proposals, could prompt the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates faster than anticipated.

"It is a payrolls day so expect some choppy price action," said Justin Lederer, interest rate strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald in New York.

"But overall, everyone is looking at the next administration to come in and to get further clarity on where interest rates might go."

The minutes of the Federal Reserve's December meeting released on Wednesday showed that almost every Fed policymaker agreed Trump's measures could call for a faster move on rates. The central bank currently expects to raise rates thrice this year.

The dollar rose to session highs against major currencies, while gold slipped.

At 10:54 a.m. ET (1554 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 3.89 points, or 0.02 percent, at 19,903.18, the S&P 500 was up 1.67 points, or 0.07 percent, at 2,270.67 and the Nasdaq Composite index was up 21.24 points, or 0.39 percent, at 5,509.17.

Five of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were lower, led by the telecom services sector's 1.73 percent decline.

Technology rose 0.4 percent, boosted by Apple .

Wal-Mart fell 1.5 percent to $68.20 after the company said Rosalind Brewer, chief executive officer of its warehouse club stores Sam's Club, would retire from on Feb. 1.

Amgen rose 3.3 percent, after a U.S. district judge blocked Sanofi and Regeneron from selling their cholesterol drug, which Amgen said infringed its patents. Regeneron was off 7 percent and was the biggest percentage loser on the S&P.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,673 to 1,081. On the Nasdaq, 1,435 issues fell and 1,140 advanced.

The S&P 500 index showed 11 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 37 new highs and eight new lows. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)