Most stocks close flat as nonfarm payroll report looms

Stocks ended flat

Stocks ended flat on most parts as investors look forward to Friday’s nonfarm payroll report, amid rising tensions between the United States and other nations.

Falling by 0.3 percent or 6.03 points closing at 19,884.91 is the Dow Jones Industrial Average with UnitedHealth Group contributing a majority of the losses while Merck contributed most of the gains.

The S&P 500 index went up 0.06 percent or 1.3 points with telecommunications going down 1.2 percent and real estate leading six sectors higher.

Nasadaq fell 0.11 percent or 6.45 pounts to 5,636.20.

Adam Sarhan, CEO of 50 Park Investments said that “Now that we're past the Fed, the next big worry for the market is the jobs report. I think investors are taking a wait-and-see approach ahead of the report.”

He added: "So far, there have not been any economic disasters [since the election]; that's why you're seeing markets hold just below all-time highs."

ADP and Moody’s reporting private firms added 246,000 jobs last month, well above estimates. This shows that recent employment data has been strong.

Chef economist at Glassdoor, Andrew Chamberlain, stated that he expects the labor market’s momentum to last at least throughout the spring. He said “This is the largest jobs expansion we've seen on record. Expansions don't die of old age; they die of economic shocks. We're also riding high on a wave of consumer confidence.”

The Federal Reserve did not change its interest rates following its first monetary policy meeting. The central bank also gave out hints on when it may be raising interest rates next.


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