US STOCKS-U.S. stocks rise for 2nd day; materials a boost

jueves 4 de febrero de 2016 17:38 GYT

* Ralph Lauren, Kohl's drag down other retailers

* Investors await monthly jobs report on Friday

* Dow up 0.5 pct, S&P 500 up 0.2, Nasdaq up 0.1 pct (Updates to close)

By Caroline Valetkevitch

Feb 4 (Reuters) - A jump in materials shares helped U.S. stocks eke out a second straight day of gains on Thursday, though disappointing forecasts from retailers and anxiety ahead of Friday's jobs report limited the advance.

The S&P 500 materials index rose 2.8 percent, leading the day's gains, as declines in the U.S. dollar lifted copper and other metals prices.

The dollar index fell for a fourth day on the latest batch of soft U.S. data, which dampened expectations for U.S. interest rate hikes this year. A weaker dollar benefits big U.S. companies that depend on overseas sales.

Data showed nonfarm productivity fell in the fourth quarter at its fastest pace in more than a year, while new orders for U.S. factory goods also fell in December by the most in a year.

The weaker data came ahead of Friday's key monthly jobs report from the U.S. government, which is expected to show 190,000 non-farm jobs added in January.   Continuación...