Micron Stock Pops, CVS Rises, and Stocks Ignore the Worst Payrolls Report Since April

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Stocks rose Friday morning as investors see political stability and fiscal spending becoming increasingly part of the picture, perhaps boosted by a negative payrolls surprise.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 51 points, or 0.2%. The S&P 500 was indicated to open up 0.2% while the Nasdaq Composite futures were up 0.5%. The price of crude oil rose 1.7% to $51.68 a barrel.

This past week has seen the Democrats take control of the Senate and riots on Capitol Hill, followed by the confirmation of President-Elect Joe Biden as the next President. Investors expect more fiscal spending as a Democratic regime is set to begin, though the party only has a slight majority in the Senate. The U.S. economy lost 140,000 jobs in December—Wall Street was expecting an increase of 100,000—and that might mean the case for stimulus is even stronger. The unemployment rate came in at a better-than-expected 6.7%.

Here were some notable stock movers:

Micron (MU) shares jumped 4% after the chip maker posted revenue of $5.77 billion, beating estimates of $5.66 billion. Earnings per share were 71 cents, against expectations of 68 cents.

United States Steel Corporation (X) rose 2% after Deutsche Bank upgraded the stock to Buy from Sell.

Newell Brands (NWL) gained 3% after Bank of America upgraded it to Buy from Neutral.

D.R. Horton (DHI) advanced 1.6% after RBC Capital Markets upgraded the stock to Outperform from Sector Perform and raised its price target to $80 from $75.

CVS Health (CVS) rose 1.5% after Jefferies upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold.

Write to Jacob Sonenshine at jacob.sonenshine@barrons.com