Stocks Flat Amid Mixed Earnings, Hiring
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost two points, or 0.1 percent, 1,881 as of 11:25 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 31 points, or 0.2 percent, to 16,528. The Nasdaq composite fell three points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,125.
EYE ON UKRAINE: Investors are watching Ukraine, where pro-Russian insurgents in the eastern part of the country are battling with Ukrainian soldiers. The government of Ukraine launched what appears to be its first major offensive to regain control in the region. Russia said Ukraine’s offensive “destroyed” a two-week-old agreement on defusing Ukraine’s crisis.
EARNINGS MISSED: LinkedIn fell $9, or 5 percent, to $151.89 after reporting its largest quarterly loss since going public. The professional networking service has been ramping up its investments in projects aimed at attracting more users. The company has fallen out of favor with investors amid concerns about the company’s rising expenses and slowing revenue growth.
MORE JOBS: The U.S. Labor Department said employers added 288,000 jobs in April, about 70,000 more than expected. They also added more jobs in February and March than earlier estimated, according to the report. The unemployment rate fell to 6.3 percent, the lowest since September 2008. The drop mostly reflected more people giving up on their job searches. People aren’t counted as unemployed unless they’re looking for work.
THE QUOTE: “There isn’t a ton of enthusiasm in the market,” said Brad Sorensen, director of market and sector research at Charles Schwab. “But overall, (the jobs report) is positive … it paints the picture of economic growth increasing.”
BEAUTY BEAT: Estee Lauder rose $2.44, or 3 percent, to $74.63. The beauty products company reported the quarterly earnings jumped 19 percent, helped by strength in emerging markets.
NO DEAL: The board of pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca on Friday rejected drugmaker Pfizer’s latest takeover offer, calling it inadequate. Pfizer, the world’s second-biggest drugmaker by sales, had proposed a $100 billion acquisition, its third attempt at buying AstraZeneca. Pfizer fell 31 cents, or 1 percent, to $30.86.
TREASURYS AND COMMODITIES: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note edged down to 2.60 percent from 2.62 percent. The price of crude oil rose 65 cents to $100.08 per barrel.