Stocks Gain on Wednesday

August 4, 2010 Updated: August 4, 2010

U.S. stock markets closed higher on Wednesday after stumbling in the early going. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 44 points, or 0.4 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index increased by 20 points. The broader S&P 500 rose 7 points. The major economic report to buoy the market was monthly payrolls from ADP, which is a precursor to the federal government’s monthly jobs report.

ADP said that private employers added 42,000 jobs last month, exceeding the forecasts made by economists. The U.S. government’s report will be released on Friday. In addition, the Institute of Supply Management’s monthly service sector index rose to 54.3 last month, from 53.8 in June, signaling expansion in the nation’s service sector—a major source of employment for the United States.