Global Stocks Inched Up After Jobs Data Comforted Investors Over the US Economy

Robinhood user scrolls through the app. - Sam Rega

Stocks edged up Monday in a chance start to the week as investors continued to assimilate the July US jobs report and assess what it means for Federal Reserve policy and markets.

US stocks surged cautiously up in European trading hours. S&P 500 futures were 0.20% higher, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures gained 0.16%, and Nasdaq futures surged 0.33%. 

The unexpectedly strong report on Friday showed the US added 528,000 jobs last month, a sign the labor market is on the right path despite fears of a recession.

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“The US economy simply cannot be deemed to be in a recession in a month when over 528,000 jobs have just been added as payrolls,” Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid said.

Nonetheless, with a tight labor market in place, wages are set to continue rising quickly, which may well convince the now data-dependent Fed to keep up its aggressive interest-rate hikes.

To make more detailed judgments about policy, investors will watch out for inflation data reports later this week, with July’s Consumer Price Index figure set for release Wednesday.

“With another 75 basis point rate hike next month now the favored outcome, although a lot can change in that time, it could be a nervy couple of days for investors ahead of Wednesday’s inflation report,” Oanda’s senior market analyst Craig Erlam said.

Global stocks were also positive after Friday’s jobs data, with the MSCI World Index up 0.16%.

Europe led the rally, with the continent’s flagship Stoxx 600 index adding 0.45%. Paris’s CAC40 was up 0.51%, Frankfurt’s DAX40 gained 0.30%, and London’s FTSE 100 surged 0.30%.

“The downward pressure on the oil price is coming solely from a weakening of demand expectations, as markets brace for a potentially sharp economic contraction,” Hargreaves Lansdown’s lead equity analyst Sophie Lund-Yates said. “Gains triggered by the invasion of Ukraine have now been canceled out.”

Here’s what else in happening in markets Monday:

  • SoftBank’s US shares dropped 1.45% in premarket trading after the Japanese tech investor reported a record quarterly loss of more than $23 billion. Palantir and News Corp. are on the earnings docket Monday.
  • Bond yields fell. Inflation-sensitive US 2-year yields dropped 1.2 basis points to 3.206%, and US 10-year yields slipped 42.9 basis points to 2.806%.
  • The US dollar index gave up some of its recent gains, down 0.08% to 106.54.
  • The crypto rebound continued, as bitcoin rallied by 3.7% to just above $24,100, and ethereum climbed 2.9% to around $1,770.