Bad news for the economy is good news for the stock market … as long as it doesn’t get too bad


Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on November 02, 2023 in New York City. 

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

Friday’s market reaction to the jobs report comes down to a simple premise: bad news is good news, as long as it isn’t too bad.

Stocks rallied sharply after the Labor Department said nonfarm payrolls rose by 150,000 in October — 20,000 fewer than expected but a difference attributable pretty much completely to the auto strikes, which appear to be over.

For the Federal Reserve, the relatively muted job creation coupled with wage gains nearly in line with expectations adds up to a scenario in which the central bank doesn’t really have to do anything. It can…


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