Market Shakes Off Unemployment Fears


The Dow picked up gains on Friday with investors gobbling up shares of commodity and tech stocks currently trading at multi-year lows. The buying action was robust despite negative sentiment created by a weak jobs report, which revealed that a half million jobs have been lost since Labor Day.

The traders say the market had already taken into account the bad news. Goldman Sachs analysts had expected up to 300,000 jobs could have been cut so when the Labor Department reported 240,000 jobs lost last month, that did not send the stock market into a tailspin even though the figure exceeded the median forecast of 200,000.

For the week, though, the indexes closed lower after an extremely volatile run since Monday's opening bell. The first week of November was capped not only by the biggest Election Day rally ever, but followed by a huge reversal the next day. The week included the biggest two-day dive since October 1987.

Strategy Session with the Fast Money Traders

I’ve been more stunned by other things than the loss of jobs reported Friday, says Jeff Macke.

The thing that the market was most focused on Friday was Barrack Obama's first press conference. And the thing stuck out most was his comment “we have one president,” says Karen Finerman. Click here to find out what the Street thought about his choice of words.

By the time Obama was done speaking the S&P had lost 17 points, adds Tim Seymour. The market clearly wanted to hear a lot and they didn’t get it.

There’s a lot of unknowns in this market and as a result the volatility index is at higher levels, adds Pete Najarian.

I still believe that the Dow will trade between 7800 and 9600 for a while, adds Guy Adami.

Friday’s rally was in agriculture stocks and commodity names, adds Najarian. But financials did not support the rally. Be careful before you get too excited.

Goldman Sachs and Citigroup closed on their lows, adds Macke. And General Motors didn't look much better.

If you’re looking for long trades make sure to look at balance sheets, says Tim Seymour. I like ArcelorMittal .

I agree, adds Karen Finerman. I would focus on companies with good balance sheets. I like Mittal, too, but I would hedge a long bet by shorting the USO.

I’m bullish on engineering stocks, adds Pete Najarian. I think Flour , Foster Wheeler and KBR are all oversold. But if you get in, you have to be in the stock for the long term.

Forget the long term, counsels Macke. Take advantage of the volatility. This is a traders market.

Long term investing doesn’t mean buying a stock and walking away for years, adds Seymour. It’s important to having an exit strategy.



On Friday General Motors piled up billions in third-quarter losses and burned through cash at an alarming rate. They have also suspended talks to acquire Chrysler and are appealing to the government for help as the slumping economy dragged down sales.

Although CEO Rick Wagoner tells CNBC that bankruptcy is not in the cards, others suspect the only way to prevent that from happening is with government intervention.

I don’t want to wail on Rick Wagoner but he says GM has a $2 billion burn rate, exclaims Guy Adami. How is that possible? It's outrageous. The solution is simple. GM needs to make a car – that people want to buy!

What is the plan? asks Karen Finerman. That’s what I’m not hearing from the auto industry.

It seems to me they’re taking advantage of the crisis, muses Tim Seymour. Last quarter the car markers were trying to convince us they were on the way to recovery.

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Trader disclosure: On Nov.7, 2008, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Seymour Owns (AAPL), (BAC), (F), (MER); Pete Najarian Owns (MSFT) And Is Short (MSFT) Calls; Pete Najarian Owns (CHK) Call Spread; Pete Najarian Owns (MBI) Put Spread; Pete Najarian Owns (YHOO) And Is Short (YHOO) Calls; Macke Owns (BNI), (DIS), (UUP), (MSFT), (WMT); Adami Owns (AGU), (BTU), (C), (GS), (INTC), (NUE), (MSFT); Finerman's Firm Owns (DNA) Call Spreads; Finerman's Firm Owns (MSFT); Finerman's Firm Is Short (USO), (IYR), (IJR), (MDY), (IWM), (USO), (SPY), (RTH); Finerman's Firm Is Short (VNO) with wires