The big event came and went today as the February jobs report showed a gain of 235,000. This backs number up my contention that the ADP estimates are not worth the paper they are printed on since they had predicted 298,000. They were off for the private sector by about than 70,000.  The prior two months were revised upward by 9,000 and the unemployment rate declined down to 4.7%. The biggest gain was in construction jobs with an advance of 58,000. This was the largest advance in 10 years and manufacturing jobs were higher by 28,000. To no one’s surprise, the retail sector lost 26,000 jobs. Average hourly earnings rose by 0.2% and the average work-week remained unchanged at 34.4 hours.

The DOW was all excited with the news as it jumped out to an early gain of 82 points. Then, following its pattern of late, it declined to a loss of 30 in the early afternoon.  By session’s end, the DOW was up 44, the S&P 500 gained 7, and the NASDAQ added 22 points.

BA, the best performer in the DOW this year, sold off sharply today. The financial components GS and JPM were down, too. The jobs report sort of cemented a Fed rate increase next week and the assumption for the past few months is that this type of action would benefit these stocks. On the other hand, the healthcare components JNJ and UNH continued to do well, with both at new highs. The NASDAQ was led again by unstoppable PCLN at new highs.

Breadth numbers were positive at a 17/12 upside ratio while the VIX was lower to 11.66…still within the same range it has been in for the longest time now.

Despite today’s small gains, this is now the first lower week after six straight higher ones.

Donald M. Selkin

These are excerpts from Don Selkin’s Daily Market Notes, abbreviated and updated with permission from the author. Don Selkin is the Chief Market Strategist at Newbridge Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC and provides the Fair Value analysis for CNBC each morning.  The commentary provided in this Market Letter is intended to provide timely market analysis and should not be considered a research report.  This Market Letter may contain, and is limited to: Discussions of broad based indices; Commentaries on economic, political or market conditions; Technical analyses concerning the demand and supply for a sector, index or industry based in trading volume and price; Statistical summaries of multiple companies’ financial data, including listings of current ratings; and, Recommendations regarding increasing or decreasing holdings in particular industries or securities.  This Market Letter does not make a financial or investment recommendation or otherwise promotes a product or service of the firm.   This Market Letter contains only news, facts, and commentary on information previously reported from a news source believed to be accurate and reliable by the author.  These news sources include the following: Bloomberg Financial, Reuters, and the Associated Press.