The November jobs report was released Friday. During the month, 228,000 jobs were added, beating economists' expectations for 200,000 jobs. While September saw a 20,000 addition to its revision, October basically made it a wash with its 17,000 reduction.
But enough about the jobs number. What does it mean for stocks? In the early going, It's got the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all in the green by a healthy margin of 0.4% or more. But specifically, what does it mean for specific industries?
Many investors' first thought jumps to banks and retailers -- let's start with the latter. Macy's (M) - Get Macy's Inc Report , J.C. Penney (JCP) - Get J. C. Penney Company, Inc. Report and Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) - Get Abercrombie & Fitch Co. Class A Report are all moving higher by more than 1%.
Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) - Get Amazon.com, Inc. Report , Dollar General (DG) - Get Dollar General Corporation Report , Walmart (WMT) - Get Walmart Inc. Report and Best Buy (BBY) - Get Best Buy Co., Inc. Report aren't far behind, each tacking on about a 50-basis-point gain. We'll see if these retail stocks can add more throughout the session.
But let's look at the scenario. 228,000 jobs were added. Many of these will be seasonal shifts to help retailers through the holidays. Many of these lower-paying jobs will funnel sales back into the Walmarts and Dollar Generals of the world. But a decent portion of these sales will work into the top-line results of the other retailers in the form of gift-buying.
The average hourly work week ticked up to 34.5 hours, beating expectations of 34.4 hours, but average earnings growth of 0.2% missed economists' expectations of 0.3%. Increased work hours on top of larger earnings (despite missing expectations) further adds to the case these retailers could benefit over the holiday stretch.
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Then there are the banks. Bank of America (BAC) - Get Bank of America Corp Report , Goldman Sachs (GS) - Get Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) Report and Citigroup (C) - Get Citigroup Inc. Report are each up about 1%, while JPMorgan (JPM) - Get JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) Report and Wells Fargo (WFC) - Get Wells Fargo & Company Report are posting gains of about 0.8%.
These stocks are on the move -- despite the recent warnings that the fourth-quarter trading season may not be so good -- on the anticipation of getting one last rate hike from the Federal Reserve this year. Higher rates allow banks to boost net income margins, helping to balloon the bottom line.
Will they get it? This jobs report was good, but not great when taking into account the wage-growth miss. Further, September and October didn't knock anyone's socks off either. But it might just be enough for the Fed to green-light one more hike, unless they want to push it off until early 2018, so they can hit their 3-4 hike quota for the year.
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This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author had no positions in the stocks mentioned.