US STOCKS-Payrolls leads Wall St higher; Dow near 18,000
* Nov jobs report comes in well ahead of expectations
* Financials lead on the day, energy falls again
* American Eagle tumbles after outlook, results
* Indexes up: Dow 0.4 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.4 pct (Updates to midday trading)
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, Dec 5 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Friday, with the Dow and S&P 500 on track for their seventh straight weekly advance after the November jobs report came in much stronger than anticipated, boosting banks and other sectors tied to the pace of growth.
While crude oil continued its recent decline, weighing on energy shares, the gains were widespread, with market weakness concentrated in defensive sectors, which underperform in periods of economic expansion.
Payrolls rose by 321,000 in November, the largest number in nearly three years and way above the 230,000 estimated, while the unemployment rate held steady at 5.8 percent, a six-year low.
While the report blew past forecasts, it also raised expectations that a rate hike from the Federal Reserve may materialize sooner than previously thought. Continuación...