US jobs data in focus, oil surges

LONDON - Financial markets focused on Friday on upcoming US jobs data for a guide to the path of interest rates was European stocks climbed, the dollar clung on to recent gains and bonds weakened.

By (Reuters)

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Published: Fri 6 Jul 2007, 5:04 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 10:15 PM

Oil, meanwhile, surged to 11-month highs above $75 a barrel on worries about trouble in Nigeria and increase refining demand in the United States.

The US non-farm payrolls report for June (1230 GMT) is expected to show the US labour market remains firm, bolstering the view that a solid economy will keep down the chances of an interest rate cut this year.

That view has pushed up bond yields recently, setting off concerns that a higher cost of borrowing will squeeze out of the market the liquidity that has been behind many asset price gains.

‘The US data will decide the trading trend,’ German bank Helaba said in a note. A report on Thursday from private employment services company ADP Employer Services pointed to strong jobs growth, leading market participants to believe the jobs data may be stronger than expected.

In a Reuters survey, economists’ median forecast was for 120,000 new jobs to have been created in June compared with 157,000 in May.

European stocks were erally opened higher with the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index 0.45 percent higher.

London’s FTSE 100 rose 0.6 percent and the French CAC 40 was up 0.5 percent and Germany’s DAX up 0.3 percent.

Earlier, Japan’s Nikkei stalled after a six-day rally. The benchmark finished down 80.54 points at 18,140.94, ending lower for the first time in seven sessions. The broader TOPIX index lost 0.47 percent to 1,779.67.

Globally, however, stocks remain close to all-time highs.

Dollar, bonds, oil

The dollar held on to Thursday’s gains against the euro and sterling but was just off 2-month and 26-year lows respectively.

The yen’s low-yielding status also stayed in focus with the euro hitting a record high of 167.61 yen versus the Japanese currency according to Reuters data.

Sterling eased to $2.0092, after touching $2.0208 on Reuters dealing system on Wednesday, its highest level since 1981.

The Bank of England raised interest rates on Thursday, as expected, to 5.75 percent.

The euro was flat at $1.3588.

Euro zone government debt prices were flat to lower ahead of the jobs data. The benchmark 10-year yield was flat at 4.659 percent while the 2-year Schatz yield was 4.529 percent, up 5.5 basis points.

The European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged at 4.0 percent on Thursday.

Abductions in Nigeria’s oil producing Niger Delta and increased demand from refiners in top consumer the United States helped drive the price uptrend.

London Brent crude, now seen as a better indicator of the global market, rose 15 cents to $74.90 a barrel by 0952 GMT, after touching a session high of $75.10, its highest since August 14, 2006.

US crude oil rose 2 cents to $71.83.

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