Markets Right Now: Jobs, Brexit progress send stocks higher

By The Associated PressMarketsAssociated Press

The latest on developments in financial markets (All times local):

4 p.m.

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Stocks are ending higher as investors welcome a strong U.S. jobs report and progress in Britain's talks about leaving the European Union.

Health care stocks rose more than the rest of the market Friday. Alexion Pharmaceuticals jumped 7.2 percent after The New York Times reported that an activist hedge fund has taken a stake in the company.

European markets rose. In addition to advances in the Brexit talks, investors were also relieved that Germany moved closer to forming a coalition government.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 14 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,651.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 117 points, or 0.5 percent, to 24,329. The Nasdaq composite added 27 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,840.

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11:45 a.m.

Stocks are climbing as investors welcome a strong U.S. jobs report and progress in Britain's talks about leaving the European Union.

Technology stocks were helping lead the way Friday, as they have all year. Microsoft was up 1.5 percent.

Health care stocks also rose. Alexion Pharmaceuticals jumped 7 percent after The New York Times reported that an activist hedge fund has taken a stake in the company.

European markets rose. In addition to advances in the Brexit talks, investors were also relieved that Germany moved closer to forming a coalition government.

The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 10 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,647.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 77 points, or 0.3 percent, to 24,289. The Nasdaq added 36 points, or 0.5 percent, to 6,848.

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9:35 a.m.

Stocks are opening moderately higher on Wall Street as investors welcome a strong U.S. jobs report and signs of progress in Britain's departure from the European Union.

Technology stocks were leading the way again in early trading Friday, as they have all year. Microsoft was up 2.1 percent and Apple was up a little less than 1 percent.

European markets were broadly higher after Britain announced a preliminary agreement on departing the EU. Investors were also relieved to see that Germany was moving closer to forming a coalition government.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 8 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,645.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 32 points, or 0.1 percent, to 24,245. The Nasdaq composite added 49 points, or 0.7 percent, to 6,862.