US futures edge up ahead of key jobs data; oil claws back some gains

  • US futures edged up as investors wait on key labor market data due on Friday. 
  • Economists forecast employers to have added 250,000 jobs last month, a softer number compared to June. 
  • Oil prices rose after hitting a six-month low this week on demand destruction fears.

US futures rose on Friday ahead of key labor market data, while oil edged a little higher to reverse some of the previous day’s losses. 

Futures across the board were in the green, with those on the S&P 500,  Dow Jones and Nasdaq 100 gaining 0.19%, 0.23% and 0.22%, respectively. 

Investors are eagerly anticipating nonfarm payroll data, especially after data this month showed US GDP contracted for a second straight quarter in the three months to June, living up to the technical definition of a recession. 

Economists expect employers to have added 250,000 jobs last month compared to a rise of 372,000 in June.

A stronger than expected number will likely encourage the Federal Reserve to be more aggressive in their monetary policy to tackle inflation as the economy is growing. But a weaker number than expected would reserve the Fed from raising interest rates further because the economy is not growing as robustly. 

“A weak US non-farm payrolls this evening will give ammunition to the riders of the apocalypse if labor market weakness is finally seeping through in tier-1 data,” OANDA analyst Jeffrey Halley said in a note. 

Meanwhile, oil markets recovered earlier losses with international benchmark Brent crude rising 0.76% to trade at $94.87 a barrel while West Texas Intermediate increased 0.76% to $89.23 a barrel. Oil prices have fallen to their lowest level in around six months on growing concerns that a potential recession will weigh down on demand. 

“Crude oil prices have now dipped to their lowest levels since Russia invaded Ukraine as weaker demand and improving supply are seen in the short term,” Saxo Bank analysts wrote. 

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