After Market: A Rising Employment Tide Lifts All Stocks

There's a popular expression here on Wall Street when things are going well: A rising tide lifts all boats. And that was certainly the case Friday.

A bullish jobs report sent stocks sharply higher: The government said 203,000 jobs were created last month, and the unemployment rate dropped to 7 percent. That's the lowest it's been in five years.

Stocks Continue Downward Slide
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) rallied 198 points, snapping a five-session losing streak. The Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) jumped 20 points, and the Nasdaq composite index (^IXIC)
gained 29.

It was a broad-based rally with the number of gainers swamping the number of losers. But despite the big gains, the Dow and the S&P both ended their streak of eight straight weekly gains.

Financial stocks, technology, consumer and industrials led Friday's advance.

%VIRTUAL-article-sponsoredlinks%Intel (INTC) was a big winner, up 3 percent after Citigroup (C) raised its rating to 'buy' from 'neutral.' Its analyst says corporate demand for PCs is stabilizing. Other blue chip gainers: Procter & Gamble (PG), Travelers (TRV), Boeing (BA) and United Technologies (UTX) were all up about 2 percent.

But Apple (AAPL) lost 1 percent after hitting a one-year high on Thursday.

Once again, a number of retailers found themselves in investors' cross-hairs after issuing disappointing outlooks for the holiday shopping season.

  • American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) dropped 9.5 percent.

  • Ulta Salon (ULTA) tumbled 21 percent.

  • And the discount retailer Five Below (FIVE) ended the day -- you guessed it -- 5 percent below where it closed on Thursday.

  • Sears (SHLD) lost nearly 4 percent after saying it would spin off its Lands' End division.

Meanwhile, J.C. Penney (JCP) dropped 8.5 percent on word of an SEC inquiry into its finances. And Barnes & Noble (BKS) is under the SEC microscope, too. The agency is looking into the company's earnings restatement from back in July, as well as allegations from a former employee about improper accounting practices. The bookseller's stock fell 12 percent.

And InterOil (IOC) plunged 37 percent after agreeing to sell a majority stake in two gas fields, apparently for far less than investors had expected.

What to Watch Monday:

(There are no major business news events scheduled.)

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.