The GovCon Index posted a gain of 0.348 points to 74.380 in a reflection of overall positive movement in U.S. markets Friday on March jobs figures that exceeded some economists’ expectations and new manufacturing data that showed some recovery in that sector.
Both the Index and S&P 500 composite index held downward in the first hour-and-a-half of trade on pressure from low oil prices but reversed those losses as traders examined the batch of economic data.
Friday’s close puts the Index at a weekly gain of 1.273 percent.
Nonfarm businesses added 215, 000 workers to beat a Reuters estimate of 205, 000 from a survey of analysts and U.S. unemployment rose to 5 percent from 4.9 percent to temper expectations over an aggressive interest rate hike pace by the Federal Reserve, the news agency reported.
Investors also welcomed the latest Institute for Supply Management factory activity index reading of 51.8 for March to show a 2.3-point increase from February, according to Reuters.
Crude oil futures in the U.S. plunged 4 percent to $36.79 a barrel with brent down 4 percent to $38.70 a barrel after Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince told Bloomberg his country will only freeze its production if Iran and other large producers follow.
Top GovCon Index Gainers
|Symbol||Company||$ Current Price||Net Change||% Change|
|NOC||Northrop Grumman *||200.31||+2.41||+1.22%|
* Also listed in the S&P 500 composite index
|Advancing GovCon Index Issues||12|
|Declining GovCon Index Issues||18|
|Unchanged GovCon Index Issues||0|
|Index||Value||Net Change||% Change|
|S&P 500||2, 072.78||+13.04||+0.63%|
|Dow Jones Industrial Average||17, 792.75||+107.66||+0.61%|