Stocks Surge as Weak Job Growth Numbers Fuel Rate-Cut Hopes, Trade Tensions Ease

Stocks surged on Friday as lower-than-expected job growth numbers for May fueled investor views that the Federal Reserve may cut interest rates.

Equities were also pushed higher amid possible thaws in the US trade tensions with the Mexico and China.

Government data released before the market open showed the US added far fewer jobs than expected in May while the unemployment rate remained at historically low levels. April’s print was revised downward.

President Donald Trump said Mexico may be able to avert proposed US tariffs aimed at forcing that country to stop illegal migration over its northern border. He said on Twitter that Mexico may purchase agriculture products ‘at very high levels.”

Meanwhile, Chinese President Xi Jinping said during an address in Russia that the US doesn’t want a break from the Asian nation and that Trump is a friend.

Tech shares led the market higher, finishing up more than 1.9%. Microsoft (MSFT) added 2.8% while Apple (AAPL) advanced 2.7%. Intel (INTC) rose 2.1%. (AMZN) added 2.8% to pull the consumer discretionary segment nearly 1.6% higher. Marriott International (MAR) rose 3.1% while Target (TGT) firmed 1.3%.

Communications services gained nearly 1.5%, as AT&T (T) rose 1.2% while Dish Network (DISH) added 2.5% on speculation the companies may merge their satellite-television businesses. Facebook (FB) gained nearly 3%.

Lower Treasury yields pushed financial shares down 0.2%. JPMorgan Chase (JPM) slid 1.1% and Citigroup (C) lost 1.2%.

Online-fashion retailer Revolve Group (RVLV) soared nearly 89% after making its debut on the New York Stock Exchange.

In corporate news, Barnes & Noble (BKS) jumped more than 11% after the bookseller agreed to be acquired by Elliott Management in a $683 million all-cash deal.

In other economic news, wholesalers’ inventories continued their trend of rising growth in April, expanding more than expected and fueling expectations of economic expansion in the second quarter.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 1% to end the week 4.7% higher. The Standard & Poor’s 500 firmed 1% to add 4.4% for the week. The Nasdaq Composite rose nearly 1.7% to finish the week almost 3.9% higher.