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Stocks retreat despite positive jobs report

Stocks retreat despite positive jobs report
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Stock markets erased initial gains on Friday morning after a stronger-than-expected jobs report, adding to steep Thursday losses.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 500 points, or 1.8 percent, and the S&P 500 was down 83 points, or 2.3 percent. The Nasdaq composite plunged 460 points, or 4 percent.

Stocks opened the day to moderate gains after the Labor Department said the U.S. added 1.4 million jobs in August, bringing the unemployment rate down to 8.4 percent.

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Although it was the fourth straight month of gains, the report also showed jobs returning at a slower rate. The number of unemployed Americans remains 11.5 million higher than February, before the coronavirus pandemic hit.

But within hours of the opening bell, stocks fell back into the red, extending a Thursday selloff that saw investors retreat from months of steady gains. On Thursday, the Dow Jones lost 2.8 percent, the S&P shed 3.5 percent, and the Nasdaq composite dropped 5 percent.

Updated at 10:40 a.m.