Burst of hiring last month sends US stock prices higher in early trading

NEW YORK, N.Y. – U.S. stocks are opening modestly higher after the government reported a burst of hiring last month.

Employers added 321,000 jobs to their payrolls in November, the biggest surge of job creation in almost three years and far more than economists were expecting.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose four points, or 0.2 per cent, to 2,076 as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time Friday.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 46 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 17,944. The Nasdaq composite increased 15 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 4,784.

Financial stocks rose the most of the 10 sectors in the S&P 500 index.

Oil prices fell. U.S. crude lost 47 cents to $66.34 a barrel.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.29 per cent.