Roundup: Wall Street reaps weekly gains amid fresh economic data

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NEW YORK, July 3 (Xinhua) -- U.S. equities advanced for the week as investors sifted through a batch of data, assessing the shape of economic recovery.

For the week ending Friday, the Dow rose 1 percent, the S&P 500 climbed 1.7 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 1.9 percent.

The S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index, which is designed to track the performance of the 50 largest Chinese companies listed on U.S. exchanges by total market cap, logged a weekly decline of 0.9 percent.

Investors weighed the U.S. labor market recovery.

U.S. employers added 850,000 jobs in June, with unemployment rate unexpectedly edging up to 5.9 percent, the U.S. Labor Department reported Friday.

The latest data followed downwardly revised job growth of 269,000 in April and upwardly revised increase of 583,000 in May, indicating a bumpy road in labor market recovery.

In June, job gains were notable in leisure and hospitality, public and private education, professional and business services, retail trade, and other services, according to the report released by the department's Bureau of Labor Statistics. Economists polled by Dow Jones had forecast 706,000 new jobs for June.

Despite the improvement in the pandemic-ravaged labor market, some 9.5 million people remained unemployed in June, well above the pre-pandemic level of 5.7 million, according to the report.

"The overall tone of the report is consistent with rapid reopening, but not without growing pains," Chris Low, chief economist at FHN Financial said in a note on Friday.

"Manufacturers added workers, for instance, but cut hours because they cannot source parts and materials. Leisure and hospitality added 343,000 workers, one of the six biggest increases ever in the sector, but far short of the millions they need," he said.

On Thursday, a separate report by the Labor Department showed initial filings for unemployment insurance in the United States fell to a fresh pandemic-era low.

U.S. initial jobless claims, a rough way to measure lay-offs, registered 364,000 in the week ending June 26, a decrease of 51,000 from the prior week's revised level, the Department of Labor reported Thursday. Economists polled by Dow Jones had expected initial claims for unemployment totaled 390,000 last week.

Elsewhere, payroll data company Automatic Data Processing (ADP) reported Wednesday that private companies in the United States added 692,000 jobs in June, beating market expectations. However, the May total of jobs added was revised down from 978,000 to 886,000.

"While payrolls are still nearly 7 million short of pre-COVID-19 levels, job gains have totaled about 3 million since the beginning of 2021," said Nela Richardson, chief economist at ADP.

"Service providers, the hardest hit sector, continue to do the heavy lifting, with leisure and hospitality posting the strongest gain as businesses begin to reopen to full capacity across the country," Richardson said.

On the other data front, U.S. Manufacturing PMI (Purchasing Managers' Index) slipped to 60.6 percent in June from the May reading of 61.2 percent, according to the Institute for Supply Management. That was slightly below the Wall Street forecast.

U.S. markets will be closed Monday in observance of the Independence Day holiday, which falls on Sunday. Enditem

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