US stocks gained 0.3% Friday following a mixed batch of economic data releases and high-profile earnings reports.
The US economy added 261,000 jobs in October, falling well short of expectations, although there was a net 90,000 revision to the previous two months’ readings which softened the headline miss.
Elsewhere on the economic data front, the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) index for the service sector hit 60.1 in October (a reading above 50 indicates expansion), a 12-year high. This highlights the strength of the underlying economy and likely keeps the Fed on track to hike rates in December.
Attention for the week ahead will turn to the US tax plan, President Trump’s tour of Asia, and US department store earnings, with focus on the key upcoming holiday quarter.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index closed unchanged Friday, rounding off a strong week of gains in which technology stocks outperformed.
In FX markets, the euro reversed early gains against the dollar to close 0.4% lower. Sterling, however, closed up 0.1% against the dollar after Thursday’s 1.4% decline following the BoE’s dovish outlook statement.
Markets traded mixed in Asia this morning following comments from Chinese central bank Governor Zhou on excessive leverage in the system.
Chinese equities actually finished 0.5% higher for the session, recovering into the close having been down as much as 0.4% at one point. Japanese stocks closed marginally higher, with Consumer Discretionary and Energy stocks contributing the most gains.