Stock futures rise sharply after strong jobs news

Stock futures rise sharply after strong jobs news

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NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock futures were pointing to a strong open on Friday after the government said employers added 175,000 jobs in February, far more than expected.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 85 points to 16,500 as of 8:55 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor's 500 index futures were up 10 points to 1,886 and the Nasdaq futures rose 16 points to 3,738.

JOBS: The Labor Department's report was much better than expected. Economists had been expecting the February data to show an increase of 145,000 jobs, according to data from FactSet. Investors had low expectations because of winter storms that hit much of the country last month. The positive job figures were a relief because the harsh weather closed factories, lowered auto sales, and caused existing-home sales to plummet.

BONDS DROP: Investors sold bonds, causing bond yields to move notably higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note was up to 2.81 percent from 2.73 percent on Thursday. The yield on that note had been as low as 2.6 percent earlier this week.

DON'T FORGET UKRAINE: Lawmakers in the Russian-occupied Crimea unanimously declared they wanted to join Russia and would put the decision to voters in 10 days. President Barack Obama and several other Western leaders condemned the move.

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