NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are rising Friday following a jobs report that was better than most experts expected. Bond prices fell and yields rose, which sent shares of banks and financial companies surging. Technology companies also climbed. Investors remained focused on corporate earnings. Weight Watchers climbed after reporting a strong quarter while Viacom, the media company that owns Comedy Central and MTV, sank.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index added 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,476 as of 11:30 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 18 points, or 0.1 percent, to 22,044. It is on pace for its ninth gain in a row. The Nasdaq composite climbed 18 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,358. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gained 6 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,411.
JOB GAINS: July was the second consecutive month of strong hiring, a sign the economy is still in solid shape. However, Americans’ paychecks still aren’t growing much. The Labor Department said average hourly pay rose 2.5 percent from a year ago, the same pace as June and slower than normal for a period with very low unemployment.
Bond prices dropped and yields rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note climbed to 2.27 percent from 2.22 percent as investors concluded it is more likely the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates again later in the year.
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Banks made big gains. Bank of America climbed 63 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $25. JPMorgan Chase rose $1.78, or 1.9 percent, to $94.28 and KeyCorp picked up 52 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $18.56. High-dividend stocks like utilities and phone companies traded lower.
GRUBHUB GETS TAKEOUT: Grubhub plans to buy another online food-ordering business and will pay $287.5 million for Yelp’s Eat24 unit. The companies also announced a deal that will let people reading Yelp reviews order food from restaurants that use Grubhub. Yelp climbed $8.98, or 28.6 percent, to $40.35 while Grubhub added $4.72, or 9.8 percent, to $52.97.
WATCH THIS: Weight loss company Weight Watchers International raised its forecasts for the year after it reported a bigger profit and more revenue than analysts expected. The company said it had 20 percent more subscribers at the end of June than it did a year earlier. Its stock gained $8.42, or 25.5 percent, to $41.50. It’s more than tripled in value this year.
Western Union, too,…