Heightened risk-aversion continues to dictate market direction with a sharp sell-off in the global equities, which saw Tokyo's Nikkei index and Germany's DAX plunge by more than 3%. The VIX index spiked again, rising past the 40-level in intraday trading to 42. US equity indexes whipsawed throughout most of the session, but clawing back in afternoon trading with the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 lower by around 1.5% and the Nasdaq losing by almost 2.3%.
Economic data remains overshadowed by sovereign-debt worries in the Eurozone, with fears that the deficit contagion will continue spreading throughout Europe dictating market direction. The April jobs data was mixed as the unemployment rate unexpectedly edged up to 9.9% versus 9.7% from March. However, the highly-anticipated non-farm payrolls report sharply beat consensus estimates for an increase of 190k jobs, instead surging by 290k jobs - the highest level since March 2006 and up from an upwardly revised March reading of 230k jobs.
Canada's labor report also sharply beat estimates - triggering a knee-jerk reaction higher in the Loonie of over 1%. The net employment change for April spiked to 108.7k, far surpassing estimates for a slight improvement to 25.0k from 17.9k from March. The unemployment rate also drifted lower to 8.1% from 8.2%.
Meanwhile, weighing on the British Pound were the results of the UK election with David Cameron to be the next UK Prime Minister, albeit with no clear majority, resulting in a hung Parliament.