Stocks Stay Red by Noon

Stocks dipped on Friday as traders looked for clarity around the presidential and congressional election results. Sentiment was kept in check by better-than-expected U.S. unemployment data.

The Dow Jones Industrials dropped 69.76 points to 28,320.42.

The S&P 500 lost 3.55 points to 3,506.90.

The NASDAQ tailed off 20.04 points, to 11,870.89.

Wall Street was coming off its fourth-straight positive session on Thursday and the major averages were on track for their best week in months. The S&P 500 added 6.8%, and NASDAQ was up 8.1%. That would be their best weekly performance since April. The Dow is up 6.5% week to date, which would be its biggest one-week rally since June.

The surge in stocks this week has come despite lingering uncertainty about the outcome of Tuesday’s election. Democratic nominee Joe Biden leads with 253 electoral votes, according to media projections, while President Donald Trump has 214.

Votes are still being counted in several key states including Nevada, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Georgia. Some media outlets say Biden has taken a slight lead in Georgia and Pennsylvania.

The U.S. Labor Department said that country’s unemployment rate fell to 6.9% in October from 7.9%. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected the rate to dip to 7.7%. The U.S. economy also added 638,000 jobs last month, topping an estimate of 530,000.

Prices for the 10-Year Treasury were lower, lifting yields to 0.82% from Thursday’s 0.77%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices skidded $1.65 to $37.14 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices regained six dollars to $1,952.80

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