TODAY   |  March 09, 2013

On the rebound? Markets up, unemployment down

The Dow Jones industrial average saw the numbers close at a record high on Friday for the fourth straight day, while jobs numbers also showed signs of growth. Does this mean the economy is heading towards a recovery? CNBC’s Courtney Reagan reports.

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>>> with promising news on both wall street and main street . an improved employment picture and rally on the stock market . cnbc's courtney reagan has more on that. good morning to you.

>> good morning to you, carl. the recovery really rolls on. on friday we saw an employment report that surpassed even the most optimistic forecast. that news about hiring sent stocks soaring. [ bell ]

>> for the first time in over five years, the dow closed at a record high over and over and over again. it comes as the latest jobs report shows a better than expected 236,000 jobs added last month. the unemployment rate ticking down to 7.7%.

>> i think we're close to a tipping point. and we're almost there.

>> who's hiring? business services , health care , even hollywood and construction. where existing homes have risen for 11 straight months. demand so high much of the country has shifted to a seller's market.

>> the hope is that the turn up in both the stock market and the housing market may be helping the people in the upper income bracket. let's hope it trickles down to everyone.

>> while consumer confidence is generally improving, a number of big retailers including walmart and target are expressing concern about the impact of higher payroll taxes and rising gas prices .

>> consumers are feeling a little bit better, but we're in a fragile state . so you can't take it for granted.

>> fragile in part because of washington and the sequester. the broad automatic cuts in government spending set in motion on march 1. while there's been little impact felt by average americans so far, economists generally agree that will change long term. which means ironically the better the current economic data is, the less incentive lawmakers have to compromise down the road.

>> in today's "alice in wonderland" world, it's strange. good news brings the possibility of more gridlock.

>> the full impact of the recent sequester-driven spending cuts will be more apparent in the months ahead. carl?

>> nice to have a little good news to talk about. thank you very much, courtney reagan.

>> yeah. especially before the cuts,