(Reuters) - Wall Street's main indexes saw gains on Wednesday following the release of fresh data indicating a cooling labor market. Additionally, a pullback in U.S. Treasury yields from their multi-year highs provided a boost to investor sentiment.
Before moderating, the 30-year Treasury yield briefly exceeded 5% for the first time since August 2007, while the 10-year and five-year yields reached their highest levels since 2007.
"Investors are worried that yields will continue to increase, but technical indicators point to a likely decline, which may raise bond and equities prices and pave the way for an end-of-year rally, according to CFRA Research's chief investment strategist Sam Stovall.
Several major growth stocks experienced gains, with Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN), Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA), Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL), and Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) all rising between 1.5% and 4.4%.
Consumer discretionary stocks led the gains among the major S&P 500 sectors, rising by 1.4%, while energy shares suffered a 3.0% decline due to falling crude prices stemming from demand concerns.
The ADP National Employment report revealed that U.S. private employers added the fewest workers in over 2.5 years in September, with only 89,000 jobs added, significantly lower than the expected 153,000. This data comes on the heels of an unexpected increase in job openings in August, shifting the focus to the more comprehensive non-farm payrolls data scheduled for release on Friday.
"The ADP report has given investors some reason to be cautiously optimistic about Friday's payroll numbers," added Stovall.
S&P Global's Composite Purchasing Managers' Index for September came in at 50.2, slightly above the preliminary estimate of 50.1. However, separate data indicated a slowdown in the U.S. services sector.
According to CME's FedWatch tool, traders are currently estimating an over 81% chance of interest rates remaining unchanged in November and a 64% chance of no change in December.
As of 12:03 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 75.25 points, or 0.23%, at 33,077.63, the S&P 500 was up 20.59 points, or 0.49%, at 4,250.04, and the Nasdaq Composite was up 126.92 points, or 0.97%, at 13,186.38.
Investors are closely monitoring the S&P 500's 4,200-point mark as the next level of support in case recent selling pressure on equities continues.
Helen of Troy experienced a 7.9% drop in its stock price after reporting lower second-quarter sales and profit figures.
Meanwhile, Rollins (NYSE: ROL) saw a 2.5% decline in its stock price after Spruce Point Capital Management disclosed its short position on the pest-control firm.
On the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), advancing issues outnumbered decliners with a ratio of 1.15-to-1, while on the Nasdaq, the ratio stood at 1.05-to-1.
Notably, the S&P index recorded one new 52-week high and 39 new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 11 new highs and 313 new lows.