Stocks rise slightly ahead of jobs report, dollar steady By Reuters

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© Reuters. Passers-by wearing protective face masks are seen in front of an electronic board showing Japan’s average Nikkei share amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Tokyo, Japan November 1, 2021. REUTERS /Issei Kato

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By Samuel Indyk

LONDON (Reuters) – European stocks were mostly higher on Friday as investors await a key jobs report that will help gauge the strength of the U.S. economy and provide guidance on the pace of policy tightening. of the Federal Reserve in the second half.

The pan-European rose 0.16% after a strong trading session in Asia-Pacific overnight and after a positive session on Wall Street.

The MSCI World Stock Index, which tracks stocks in 50 countries, rose 0.17% and is on track for its second consecutive weekly gain after seven weeks of losses.

225 rose 1.27% and resource-rich Australia finished up 0.88%.

Markets in China, Hong Kong and the UK are closed on public holidays.

Investors are eagerly awaiting the full jobs report from the US Department of Labor, due at 12:30 GMT, for any hint of a slowdown in the jobs market, which could give the Fed the chance to slow down or even suspend interest rate hikes in the second half of the year.

“Employment will matter more in the months ahead because income and job security will matter more,” said Paul Donovan, chief economist at UBS GWM, who added that the consumption will be driven by income – or income plus access to credit.

“As demand normalizes, companies starting to lay off workers will affect the balance of consumer spending and savings,” Donovan added.

A Reuters poll of analysts expects 325,000 non-farm payrolls to have been added in May, with average incomes slowing to 5.2% on an annual basis from 5.5% in April.

Balancing the outlook for growth and inflation is a big concern for central bank policymakers as they seek to avoid a hard landing and tip economies into recession.

Eurozone inflation hit a new record high in May, which markets see as a challenge to the European Central Bank’s view that gradual rate hikes will be enough to rein in rapidly rising prices.

“The euro zone inflation figure is a confirmation that even the ECB is now compelled, even if it faces a likely recession, to raise rates, perhaps faster or more aggressively than expected” , said Jeroen Blokland, head of research at the investment research platform. Real insights.

“I can imagine we’ll be testing the lows again somewhere in the coming weeks or even months,” Blokland added.

Money markets have now fully priced in a 25 basis point interest rate hike from the ECB at its July meeting, with tightening of around 124 basis points expected by the end of the year, which equates to nearly five increases of 25 basis points.

Markets also locked in back-to-back 50 basis point hikes from the Fed in June and July, but there remains uncertainty about what will happen after that.

European government bonds were slightly higher with lower than usual trading volumes given the holidays.

The yield on German 10-year government bonds rose 2 basis points to 1.247% after briefly hitting a new eight-year high at 1.263% earlier in the session.

Italy’s 10-year yield was seen briefly rising in previous trading, but with futures markets barely moving, traders said that was due to the lack of liquidity in cash bonds on Friday.

The US Dollar edged lower as traders await the US jobs report.

The , which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.08% to 101.68.

Oil prices have fallen as markets adjust to the decision by OPEC+ oil producing countries to increase production.

futures fell 1.2% to $116.25 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 1.3% to $115.38.

Gold prices fell 0.1% after hitting $1,873 an ounce, the highest level since May 9.

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