NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are climbing Friday after the government said employers stepped up their hiring last month, another positive sign for the economy. That's helping small-company stocks, which stand to benefit more than others from faster economic growth. Banks are jumping after President Donald Trump took a step to cut back financial industry regulations.
KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 169 points, or 0.9 percent, to 20,054 as of 2:05 p.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor's 500 index advanced 15 points, or 0.7 percent, to 2,296. The Nasdaq composite picked up 22 points, or 0.4 percent, to 5,658. Those indexes are little changed for the week, but the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are near all-time highs.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks climbed 16 points, or 1.2 percent, to 1,373. Smaller, domestically-focused companies may have more to gain than their larger peers from faster growth in the U.S. The Russell made big gains at the end of 2016 based on those hopes.
REGULATION ROLLBACK: Financial firms rose after President Donald Trump took his first steps aimed at scaling back regulations on the industry. In an executive order, Trump directed the Treasury Secretary to look for potential changes to the Dodd-Frank law, which reshaped financial regulations after the 2008-09 financial crisis.
The order does not have any immediate impact, but suggests Trump is intent on reducing regulations, which could boost profits for financial companies and banks. Trump also signed a memorandum delaying an Obama-era rule that requires financial professionals who charge commissions to put their clients' best interests first when giving advice on retirement investments.
Dow components JPMorgan Chase added $2.32, or 2.7 percent, to $86.91 and Goldman Sachs rose $10.04, or 4.4 percent, to $240.45. Morgan Stanley gained $2.33, or 5.5 percent, to $44.46 and Invesco rose $1.12, or 3.8 percent, to $30.67. Smaller banks, which could find it easier to lend money if regulations are cut, also traded higher.
THE QUOTE: "They're going to benefit from not having all of this onerous red tape," said Karyn Cavanaugh of Voya Investment Strategies. "That's why we see the rallies every time they talk about regulation."
Cavanaugh said cuts in regulations would help banks lend more and speed up economic growth, which could benefit many other industries.
US JOBS: U.S. employers added 227,000 jobs in January, according to the Labor Department. That's more than last year's average monthly gain of 187,000. The unemployment rate ticked up to a low 4.8 percent from 4.7 percent in December as more people started looking for work.
CARD SWIPED: Visa said shoppers stepped up their use of debit and credit cards in the fourth quarter, and the payment processing company also benefited from its acquisition of Visa Europe. Its profit and revenue were stronger than analysts expected, and Visa's stock jumped $3.98, or .48 percent, to $86.28.
AMAZON DOESN'T AMAZE: Online retail giant Amazon traded lower as investors grew concerned about its sales. The company's fourth-quarter sales fell short of analyst estimates, and so did its forecast for revenue in the current quarter. The stock gave up $26.69, or 3.2 percent, to $813.26.
MACY'S SALE? Macy's stock soared after the Wall Street Journal reported that Hudson's Bay Co., the owner of Saks Fifth Avenue, could buy the department store chain. The companies declined to comment.
Macy's jumped $1.76, or 5.7 percent, to $32.48. The stock has been trading around five-year lows. Hudson's Bay stock rose 4 percent in Toronto.
AMGEN ADVANCES: Biotech drugmaker Amgen disclosed a bigger profit and better sales than analysts had expected. It also reported results from a study that showed its cholesterol drug Repatha reduced risk of death, heart attack and stroke in patients with advanced atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. That could help boost prescriptions for Repatha, which was approved in August. Amgen $6.51, or 4.1 percent, to $166.09.
SAFETY CHECK: Network security company Fortinet reported a bigger profit and greater revenue than analysts expected and its stock climbed $4.68, or 14.1 percent, to $37.86. Competitor FireEye slumped $2.01, or 15.5 percent, to $10.96 after it disclosed a smaller profit and less revenue than expected. FireEye also forecast weaker-than-expected sales for the current quarter.
BONDS: Bond prices gave up an early gain. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note stayed at 2.48 percent.
METALS: Gold inched up $1.40 to $1,220.80 an ounce. Silver added 5 cents to $17.48 an ounce. Copper lost 7 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $2.62 a pound.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude added 20 cents to $53.74 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, added 25 cents to $56.81 a barrel in London.
CURRENCY: The dollar dipped to 112.67 yen from 112.70 yen. The euro edged up to $1.0776 from $1.0764.
OVERSEAS: France's CAC 40 jumped 0.6 percent. The British FTSE 100 rose 0.7 percent while Germany's DAX added 0.2 percent. The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo finish almost unchanged and Seoul's Kospi added 0.1 percent. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong shed 0.2 percent.
AP Markets Writer Marley Jay can be reached at http://twitter.com/MarleyJayAP His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/journalist/marley-jay