A popular way to bet on the beleaguered technology sector on Friday was on track to post its best one-day gain in about two weeks. The tech-focused Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF was trading at near its highest, up 1.4%, which would mark its best daily rally since June 19 when the ETF climbed 1.48%, according to FactSet data. Gains in the exchange-traded fund were led by solid advances in shares of Applied Materials Inc. , Seagate Technology Plc. and Qorvo Inc. , all up at least 3%. The resurgence in tech names, which have seen fitful trade over the past few weeks as questions about lofty valuations plague the sector, was in part helping the tech-laden Nasdaq Composite Index to power higher, up 1.1% on the day. Friday's advance also comes after an upbeat employment report that showed the U.S. added 222,000 jobs in June, representing the second-best job haul this year. Healthy employment combined with muted levels of inflation are being read as underpinning a continued rise for risk assets, including stocks, with an expectation that the Federal Reserve will lift interest rates, increasing borrowing costs for companies, but at a more subdued pace. The S&P 500 index was up 0.7% at 2,426, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average was climbing 0.5% at 21,416.
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