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Two Ways: Job Losses Getting Canned?

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Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

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The Labor Department said the US unemployment rate reached its highest level in 25 years, but stocks rallied nonetheless as the rate of loss was the smallest since last October.

According to Reuters, employers cut 539,000 jobs in April, bringing the total unemployment rate up to 8.9%. Jobs were lost across almost all sectors except government, education and health services.

After cutting 167,000 positions in March, the manufacturing sector shed 149,000 jobs. Construction, which eliminated 135,000 jobs last month, dropped 110,000. And in the service sector, 269,000 positions were lost, versus 381,000 in March.

The Labor Department says 5.7 million jobs have been cut since the recession began in December of 2007.

For perspective, see Op-Ed: The Crisis Is Over - For Now.

From the Bull Pen: Professor Smita Sadana continues to eye the Natural Gas ETF (UNG). A low volume pullback to $14.25 could be another opportunity for entry. If and when.

From the Bear Cave: Dollar bears can't help but notice the weakness in the Dollar Index (DXY). See the Inverse ETF (UDN) breaking out of a multi-month range. A sell stop can be set below $25.50.

Have a great weekend, Minyans. If you need me, you can find me on the beach!

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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