Stocks Soar on Services Growth and Japan's Rate Cut

The Dow surged nearly 200 points, while inflation fears propelled gold to another record close. The Institute for Supply Management said its services index rose to 53.2 last month from 51.5 in August. Economists had expected the measure to rise to 52.

Strong News From the Services Sector

The services sector unexpectedly grew at a faster pace in September -- lowering the risk that the U.S. economy will fall into a double-dip recession. What%u2019s more, key services index components suggest both business activity and hiring will increase in the immediate quarters ahead -- something that could lead to increased hiring.

Factory Orders Rise, but Not as Much as Expected

Factory orders rose just 0.1% in July, the U.S. Commerce Department announced Thursday in a report that further clarified that the manufacturing sector's expansion slowed down this summer. While the statistic did indicate tepid growth, it was less than the 0.3% gain economists had predicted.

Service Sector Growth Slows in June

The June service sector report from the the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) shows slower growth heading into the second half of the year. The group's non-manufacturing index fell from a more robust reading in May. Despite the drop, the June number still indicates growth, just at a lower rate.

Preview: A Quiet Start to the Second Half of the Year

Markets in the U.S. are closed Monday for the holiday and while some economic figures will be released this week, the market will likely be in store for a respite from its recent jitters. Earnings season, however, is just around the corner.

Service Sector Expansion Stays on Track

According to the Institute for Supply Management, service sector businesses grew for the fifth straight month in May, and for the first time since early 2008, added more jobs than they shed. Meanwhile, manufacturing's upswing continues as well.

May's Factory Index Hints at More Job Growth

The Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index expanded for the 10th straight month in May. A key employment component also rose -- suggesting both more job gains in the sector and for the U.S. economy overall in May.