US stocks rise slightly on strong jobs data

World Today

This Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014, file photo, shows the Wall Street entrance of the New York Stock Exchange. U.S. stocks edged lower in early trading, Friday, Jan. 9, 2015, after two days of big gains. Photo: AP

U.S. employers added 257,000 jobs in January and wages jumped by the most in six years, evidence that the job market is closer to full health. The gain was far better than the 230,000 jobs economists had expected. U.S. stocks advanced modestly in early trading Friday, adding to the mammoth gains already posted this week, as investors cheered data that showed employers hired more Americans and employee wages were growing.

The unemployment rate edged up slightly to 5.7 percent from 5.6 percent in December.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 12 points, or 0.1 percent, to 17,893 as of 9:50 a.m. Eastern. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose a point, or 0.1 percent, to 2,063 and the Nasdaq composite fell six points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,760.

The Dow is up 4.3 percent just this week, its biggest weekly gain since 2011, while the S&P 500 is up 3.5 percent this week, its best since October.

Adding to the strong report were revisions that showed hiring was far stronger in November and December than previously estimated. Workers’ wages, which have been mostly stagnant since the recession, rose at the fastest pace since 2008.

This story is compiled with information from The Associated Press.