US Stock Futures Signal Flat Open Ahead Of Nonfarm Payrolls, Unemployment Report

 
on November 02 2012 4:31 AM

The U.S. stock index futures point to a flat open Friday, ahead of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' nonfarm payrolls report and unemployment report.

The futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down 0.07 percent, the futures on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index were down 0.09 percent and those on the Nasdaq 100 Index were down 0.10 percent. 

Investors are likely to focus on the nonfarm payrolls report Friday. The report, which measures the change in the number of people employed during the previous month, excluding the farming industry, is expected to increase 125,000 in October, up from 114,000 in September.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics will also release its unemployment report, which measures the percentage of the total workforce that was unemployed and actively seeking employment during the previous month. The October unemployment rate is expected to marginally rise to 7.9 percent, up from 7.8 percent in September.

On Thursday, the U.S. markets rose with investor sentiment turning positive as the jobless claims fell more than expected, indicating the revival of the economic growth. According to the data reported Thursday by the Labor Department, the initial jobless claims fell to 363,000 in the week ending Oct. 27, down from 369,000 in the previous week. Meanwhile, according to Automatic Data Processing’s (ADP) National Employment Report released Thursday, employers added 158,000 jobs in October, above the expectation of 135,000.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.04 percent, the S&P 500 Index was up 1.09 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 1.44 percent.

European markets remained flat Friday as investors continued to maintain caution amid revival of concerns of debt crisis affecting the euro zone. London's FTSE 100 was down 11.75 points, Germany's DAX 30 index rose 6.70 points and France's CAC 40 fell 3.53 points.

Asian stocks rose Friday following the global cues. According to the data released Friday by the Bank of Japan, the country’s monetary base advanced to 10.8 percent in October, up from 9 percent rise in September. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up 272.53 points, Japan's Nikkei Stock Average rose 104.35 points and India’s BSE Sensex gained 209.66 points.  

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