Should the figures come in lower than expected, the greenback may see a solid retreat across the market
Wall Street stocks finished higher overnight as risk sentiment improved somewhat. As a result, major indexes erased recent losses to turn positive on the weekly charts. The benchmark S&P 500 gained 1.8%, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 2.7%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.3%. On the data front, the ADP employment report showed that the private sector added 128,000 jobs in May, lower than the 299,000 expected. In individual stocks, shares of Microsoft finished 0.8% higher after early losses seen in response to the news that the company cut sales and earnings guidance for the current quarter.
Following suit, Asian stock markets advanced ahead of a key US jobs report. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.45%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 was up 1.27% after the data showed that service sector activity grew at its fastest pace in six months in May. South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.44% even as headline and core inflation rates hit highs not seen in over a decade. Markets are shut in Hong Kong and China.
The dollar, meanwhile, stays under pressure on Friday after yesterday’s break below the 102.00 figure. The USD index briefly dipped to 101.30 earlier in the day before bouncing in recent trading, thus turning slightly positive on the day. Traders are looking to the US Labour Department’s jobs report for confirmation of a slowdown in the employment market. Should the figures come in lower than expected, the greenback may see a solid retreat across the market to finish the third consecutive week lower.
Elsewhere, OPEC+ producers agreed at a meeting on Thursday to a bigger-than-expected oil-production increase of 648,000 barrels a day in July and August. Oil prices rallied in a knee-jerk reaction to the decision, to get back above $118 a barrel. However, the upside momentum has waned on Friday, with Brent crude is back targeting the $116 mark in early European trading.