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The Dow Jones today jumped at market open today after the U.S. Department of Labor announced that the U.S. economy added 157,000 jobs in July. That figure fell short of the 190,000 spots that economists had projected.
It was also the lowest increase in positions since March 2018. However, the 3.9% unemployment rate is close to the lowest level that we've seen the official unemployment rate since the late 1960s.
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Here are the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
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Now here's a closer look at today's Money Morning insight, the most important market events, and stocks to watch.
Money Morning Insight of the Day
Earnings season is well underway. And if you're looking to make real money, it's not too late to get started. Money Morning Quantitative Specialist Chris Johnson argues the markets are at a tipping point.
And with just a few smart plays in today's classic stock picker's market, you can pull in triple-digit gains with just a small investment.
The Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- China appears ready to escalate the ongoing trade battle with the United States. The country is currently tallying a list of $60 billion in U.S. goods that it plans to hit with tariffs. These import charges would range at rates between 5% and 25%, according to the Chinese government. In a statement, the Chinese government said, "Any unilateral threat or blackmail will only lead to intensification of conflicts and damage to the interests of all parties." Earlier this week, U.S. President Donald Trump floated an additional 25% tariff on up to $250 billion in Chinese goods.
- A week after Trump announced plans to offer $12 billion in aid to the U.S. farming community, now the automotive industry is looking for a handout. According to reports, General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) is seeking an exemption to the 25% tariff for its SUV called the Buick Envision. That vehicle comprises 19% of brand sales for Buick in the United States.
Three Stocks to Watch Today: KHC
- Shares of Kraft Heinz Co. (Nasdaq: KHC) were on the move on news that the company is exploring a possible deal to purchase Campbell Soup Co. (NYSE: CPB). A report by the New York Post suggests that Kraft has not made an offer and that any purchase would likely not offer much in the way of a premium from the current share price. The news comes a day after Kraft topped Wall Street earnings and revenue forecasts and issued positive forward guidance.
- Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) fell slightly on Friday. The dip came a day after the technology giant officially became the first U.S. public company to hit a market capitalization of $1 trillion.
- "With the world's oldest profession already staked out, there are many competitors for second oldest," writes Money Morning's Tim Melvin. "Leading claimants include spies and politicians, but that can't be right." Today, Tim explains why spending on the military fuels this profession. And then he explains why he likes the firm Vectrus Inc. (NYSE: VEC).
- Other firms reporting earnings include Groupon Inc. (Nasdaq: GRPN), Dish Network Corp. (Nasdaq: DISH), and CBOE Global Markets Inc. (Nasdaq: CBOE).