Stocks closed with modest losses Friday, despite a solid but uninspiring September U.S. jobs report.
ON WALL STREET: At the close, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 28 points, about 0.2 percent, at 18,240.5. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index was off 7 points, about 0.3 percent, at 2,153.7. The Nasdaq composite gave up 14.5 points, about 0.3 percent, to 5,292.4.
OIL PRICES: As markets closed, the priceof U.S. benchmark crude oil futures dipped 83 cents to $50.15 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 61 cents to close at $50.44 a barrel on Thursday, its first close above $50 a barrel since June 23. In London, Brent crude, the international standard, slipped 85 cents to $51.66 a barrel.
JOBS REPORT: U.S. employers added 156,000 jobs in September, a decent gain that reflects a steady economy but also a sign that hiring has slowed from its robust pace last year. The unemployment rate ticked up to 5 percent from 4.9 percent, the Labor Department said Friday, but mostly for a positive reason: More people felt confident enough to start looking for work, though not all of them found jobs. As a result, more Americans were counted as unemployed.