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Stock market jump could benefit the local economy

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - Your retirement fund got a little bigger as the S&P 500 closed at a record high. The index is one of the broadest measures of the U.S. stock market. It tracks your mutual funds and 401(k)s. The S&P settled a little above 1600 and the Dow Jones crossed 15,000 for the first time.

Local economist Will Jenson says April's better-than-expected job report helped the market. It showed the economy added 165,000 new jobs last month.

"This could have some implications to some labor markets even locally. There is a lot of older workers that were holding on to jobs instead of retiring because their stock market portfolios had taken a big hit," said Jenson. Jenson said now that stock values are out of the red, we could see those workers retire and free up jobs.

Aaron Sautter of Onyx Financial Advisors in Idaho Falls said this isn't an indication of what the stock market is going to be like tomorrow.

"The Dow hitting 15,000 does indicate the economy is in a recovery period and we will expect to hit new highs and new lows in the future," Sautter said.

He also said stocks for publicly traded companies in the Gem State like, Idaho Power, Micron and Coldwater Creek, are up. But Sautter said be careful where you invest.

"When an individual stock is up and down, it isn't necessarily telling you that it's a good investment strategy. It's better to have a well diversified portfolio," he said.

The S&P 500 is up more than 11 percent since the start of the year. The Dow has jumped nearly 2,000 points.

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