The Labor Department reported Friday that the economy added 244,000 jobs overall last month, well above the 185,000 jobs that analysts had predicted. Private employers added 268,000 jobs, the most since February 2006. The unemployment rate rose, however, to 9.0 percent from 8.8 percent in part because the survey counted more people who resumed looking for work.
Stocks rallied broadly, with all 10 company types that make up the S&P 500 rising more than 0.5 percent.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 120 points, or 1 percent, to 12,705 in morning trading. The S&P 500 added 13, or 0.9 percent, to 1,348. The Nasdaq composite rose 24, or 0.9 percent, to 2,839.
"Everyone was a bit surprised by the jobs number," said Frank Fantozzi, the chief executive of Planned Financial Services, a Cleveland, Ohio-based firm. "It's a good indication for the markets that we are still in the growth stage."
The higher jobs number also helped stem a sell-off in commodities brought on by fears that the economy was sputtering. Oil rose back above $100 a barrel after falling below the mark Thursday for the first time since mid-March.
The rise in oil prices helped energy companies. Exxon Mobil and Chevron Corp. each gained 1.7 percent.
Friday marks the one-year anniversary of the "Flash Crash." Stocks tumbled that day when one large trade overwhelmed the market's computer servers and sent prices in a tailspin.
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and Fannie Mae are among the companies reporting quarterly results by the end of the day.