Stock futures point to huge gains after US economy unexpectedly adds jobs in May

The economy added 2.5M jobs in May

U.S. equity futures are pointing to a sharply higher open on Friday after the May nonfarm payroll report showed the U.S. economy unexpectedly added jobs in May.

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Dow futures are indicating a rise of 2.8 percent at the opening bell. The S&P 500 is on track to gain 2 percent and Nasdaq futures are pointing to an advance of 0.7 percent.

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The U.S. economy added 2.5 million jobs in May as the unemployment rate fell to 13.3 percent. The economy was expected to shed 8 million jobs as the unemployment rate shot up 19.8 percent.

The S&P 500 fell for the first time in five days on Thursday after a private payrolls report showed the number of U.S. workers filing for unemployment benefits eased for a ninth straight week though the total number of people getting benefits rose slightly. A drop in that number the week before had raised hopes that some companies were rehiring workers as the economy gains momentum after pandemic fighting shutdowns.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
I:DJIDOW JONES AVERAGES26075.3+369.21+1.44%
SP500S&P 5003185.04+32.99+1.05%
I:COMPNASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX10617.443394+69.69+0.66%

The S&P 500 lost 0.3 percent after being on track earlier in the day for its longest winning streak since December. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose less than 0.1 percent and the Nasdaq composite fell 0.7 percent.

AIRLINE STOCKS SOAR AS AMERICAN, UNITED ADD BACK FLIGHTS

Regional airlines were strong gainers after American Airlines surged 41 percent, the biggest gain in the S&P 500. It announced it plans to fly 55 percent of its normal U.S. schedule next month, up from only 20 percent in April.

In Asia, the Nikkei in Japan gained 0.7 percent, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong surged 1.7 percent and China's Shanghai Composite added 0.4 percent.

In Europe, London's FTSE added 1.68 percent, Germany's DAX jumped 2.43 percent and France's CAC gained 2.97 percent.

In other trading, a barrel of U.S. crude oil for delivery in July rose $1.53 to $38.94 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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The Associated Press contributed to this article.