Slightly higher futures point to a marginally positive start for U.S. stocks on Friday. The focus is on non-farm payroll data for the month of September.
The Labor Department’s data, due at 8:30 AM ET, is expected to show employment increased by 170,000 jobs in September after climbing by 187,000 jobs in August, while the unemployment rate is expected to edge down to 3.7 percent from 3.8 percent.
ExxonMobil is likely to be in focus on reports the company is in talks to buy Pioneer Natural Resources.
On Thursday, stocks came under pressure early in the session but staged a notable recovery attempt over the course of the trading day. Still, the major averages closed the day’s session on a weak note.
After falling by nearly 190 points in early trading, the Dow ended the day down just 9.98 points or less than a tenth of a percent at 33,119.57. The Nasdaq edged down 16.18 points or 0.1 percent to13,219.83, while the S&P 500 slipped 5.56 points or 0.1 percent to 4,258.19.
The market found the going tough amid worries about the outlook for interest rates ahead of the release of closely watched employment data on Friday.
In overseas trading, Asian stocks ended mixed on Friday as investors awaited U.S. nonfarm payrolls data due later in the day.
The major European markets are up firmly in positive territory with data showing a jump in Germany’s factory orders in the month of August aiding sentiment.
In commodities, West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures are up $0.10 or 0.12% at $82.41 a barrel.
In the currency market, the dollar is slightly down against the Euro at 1.0564. Against the Japanese currency, the dollar is trading at 149.05 yen, up from 148.51 yen on Thursday, and against Pound Sterling, the dollar is weak at 1.2212.
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