US STOCKS-Wall St gains on payrolls report, QE2 support

 * Employment jumps, jobless rate falls to two-year low
 * NYSE Euronext gains on rival bid from Nasdaq, ICE
 * S&P breaks above 1,330, could trigger technical momentum
 * Dow up 0.8 pct, S&P up 0.9 pct, Nasdaq up 0.7 pct
 * For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
  (Updates to midday, changes byline)
 By Chuck Mikolajczak
 NEW YORK, April 1 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Friday
after solid data on the labor market bred confidence in the
economic recovery and comments from a Federal Reserve Bank
president signaled support for quantitative easing.
 The combination of good news for the market pushed the S&P
500 through a key technical level it has been unable to
sustain despite several attempts this month.
 U.S. employment recorded a second straight month of solid
gains in March and the jobless rate fell to a two-year low of
8.8 percent. For details, see [ID:nNOAT00477]
 "We are growing, we are getting more profitable, we are
going to see more jobs. That means consumers are going to do
better. That is the better picture to look at," said Marc
Pado, U.S. market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. in San
Francisco.
 New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley
said in response to reporters' questions in San Juan, Puerto
Rico, that it would be a "surprise" if the U.S. Federal
Reserve did not complete its $600 billion in bond purchases,
though the benefits of doing more have fallen.
[ID:nWEN0387][N01172677]
 The S&P broke above 1,332, a significant level as it
represents double the 12-year low hit in March 2009. If the
index stays convincingly above that threshold, it may trigger
more buying.
 "1,333 is really the breakout -- we are making new highs
for the bull market for several indices and you will see
confirmation from the S&P shortly," said Pado.
 The Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI: Quote, Profile, Research) gained 94.68
points, or 0.77 percent, to 12,414.41. The Standard & Poor's
500 Index (.SPX: Quote, Profile, Research) rose 11.27 points, or 0.85 percent, to
1,337.10. The Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: Quote, Profile, Research) advanced 19.86
points, or 0.71 percent, to 2,800.93.
 The S&P 500 ended the first quarter on Thursday with a
gain of 5.4 percent.
 NYSE Euronext (NYX.N: Quote, Profile, Research) shares rallied after Nasdaq OMX
Group Inc (NDAQ.O: Quote, Profile, Research) and IntercontinentalExchange Inc (ICE.N: Quote, Profile, Research)
unveiled a bid to buy the rival exchanges operator, topping an
earlier offer from Deutsche Boerse AG (DB1Gn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research).
[ID:nL3E7F11TO]
 <^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
 To see a graphic on jobs, see
 http://r.reuters.com/kab88r                         
 To see a graphic comparing global exchanges, see     
 http://r.reuters.com/gab88r
 ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^>
 NYSE's stock surged 11.3 percent to $39.14 while ICE
shares lost 4.1 percent to $118.52 and Nasdaq OMX rose 7.2
percent to $27.69.
 In another snapshot of the economy, the U.S. manufacturing
sector grew at a marginally slower pace in March after
accelerating at its fastest rate in nearly seven years in
February, according to the Institute for Supply Management.
The data had little impact on stocks. [ID:nN31163532]
 Construction spending fell more than expected in February,
dropping to its lowest level since October 1999, the Commerce
Department said. [ID:nN01172022]
  (Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Jan Paschal)







US STOCKS-Wall St gains on payrolls report, QE2 support