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Stocks are closing mostly lower Friday after new data on the hot U.S. jobs market suggested the Fed won’t soon rein in its aggressive rate hikes. The S&P 500 is down 0.2% and the Nasdaq lost 0.5%, while the Dow Jones industrials notched a small gain. Employers unexpectedly accelerated their hiring last month and added hundreds of thousands more jobs than forecast. While the data suggests the economy may not be in a recession, it also undercuts investor hopes that inflation may be close to peaking. Treasury yields jumped. Warner Bros. Discovery had its third worst day ever after recording weak second quarter results.

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U.S. employers added an astonishing 528,000 jobs last month despite flashing warning signs of an economic downturn, easing fears of a recession and handing President Joe Biden some good news heading into the midterm elections. Unemployment dropped another notch, from 3.6% to 3.5%, matching the more than 50-year low reached just before the pandemic took hold. The economy has now recovered all 22 million jobs lost in March and April 2020 when COVID-19 slammed the U.S. The red-hot numbers were reported Friday by the Labor Department. Economists had expected only 250,000 new jobs last month, in a drop-off from June’s revised 398,000. Instead, July proved to be the best month since February.

AP
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Asian stock markets are higher ahead of an update on the health of the U.S. jobs market while the Federal Reserve weighs whether more rate hikes are needed to cool surging inflation. U.S. futures and oil prices edged higher. Investors were looking ahead Friday to U.S. employment figures for signs of weakness that might prompt the Fed to decide it needs to ease off aggressive rate hikes to cool inflation. Investors worry rate increases by the Fed and other central banks in Europe and Asia might derail economic growth. Fed officials point to a strong job market as evidence the economy can tolerate higher borrowing costs.

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A member of the Carpenters' Union with an inflatable rat are protesting the contractor building a Shake Shack on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. On Friday, Aug. 5, the Labor Department delivers its July jobs report. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

AP
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Asian shares are mostly higher as investors welcome encouraging economic data and quarterly earnings reports from big companies. Benchmarks rose Thursday across the region, including Japan, China, Australia and South Korea. The gains followed a strong rally on Wall Street. Jitters eased over the visit of U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan after she left for South Korea and then later Japan, firm U.S. allies for decades. But analysts said some geopolitical risks remain, with China conducting military exercises near the self-ruled island that it claims as its own territory. Investors are also watching U.S. nonfarm payrolls for indications on hiring.

AP
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Asian stock markets are higher as traders watch for signs trade might be disrupted by U.S.-Chinese tensions over an American lawmaker’s visit to Taiwan. Shanghai, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul advanced after Beijing announced a ban on imports of Taiwanese citrus and fish but no immediate major penalties following the arrival of Speaker Nancy Pelosi of the U.S. House of Representatives. The mainland’s ruling Communist Party claims Taiwan as part of its territory and rejects foreign official contact with the self-ruled island democracy. The mainland gave no indication it might target sensitive industries such as Taiwanese producers of processor chips needed by Chinese smartphone assemblers.

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Stocks are closing slightly lower on Wall Street Monday as investors began another busy week of earnings and economic reports. The S&P 500 fell 0.3%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq also closed lower. U.S. crude oil prices dropped, weighing heavily on energy companies. Retailers and consumer product makers made solid gains. Boeing jumped after it cleared a key hurdle with federal regulators to resume deliveries of its large 787 airliner. August’s subdued opening follows a solid rally for stocks in July that marked the best month for the the benchmark S&P 500 since November 2020.

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Stocks are finishing higher on Wall Street Friday as investors closed out the best month for the S&P 500 since November 2020. New data showed inflation jumped by the most in four decades last month, but sentiment was buoyed by positive earnings news out of technology giants Apple and Amazon, as well as oil giants Exxon and Chevron. The technology-heavy Nasdaq ended July with the biggest gains since April 2020. Stocks have gained momentum this month, fueled by better-than-expected corporate earnings and falling bond yields, which have pulled back after soaring much of this year on expectations of higher interest rates.

AP
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Asian shares are mostly higher following a broad rally on Wall Street, but Hong Kong's benchmark sank more than 2%. Investors have grown more convinced that the Federal Reserve may temper its aggressive interest rate hikes aimed at taming inflation after data showed the U.S. economy contracted in the last quarter. But investors are cautiously eyeing regional tensions over China’s stance on Taiwan after President Joe Biden and China’s Xi Jinping spoke for more than two hours on Thursday. Japan's factory output in June jumped 8.9% from the previous month. The Commerce Department reported the U.S. economy contracted at a 0.9% annual pace in April-June following a 1.6% year-on-year drop in the first quarter.

AP
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Shares are mostly higher in Asia after the Federal Reserve ratcheted up its campaign against surging inflation by raising its key interest rate three-quarters of a point. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority matched that with an increase of its own. Oil prices pushed higher while U.S. futures edged lower. The Fed’s latest hike lifts the benchmark short-term rate to its highest level since 2018. The S&P 500 gained 2.6% and the technology heavy Nasdaq jumped by the most in over two years. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also closed higher. Strong earnings from Google's owner Alphabet, Microsoft and other companies helped lift investors’ mood.