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Dow Jones Posts Modest Gains Ahead of November NFP

dow jones
dow jones

The Dow Jones traded higher yesterday ahead of the much-anticipated Non-Farm Payrolls report which is due today. The US’ blue-chip stock index finished with a 28-point or 0.10% gain at 27,677.8.

Gainers and Losers

Nike led gains when it scored a 2.21% uptick at 95.79. Stock of the footwear and apparel company soared on news that Goldman Sachs added it to their Conviction List. They described the company as a “unique asset” to have. Apple was also up 1.47% when it was predicted that the tech giant will have a strong holiday quarter driven by the iPhone 11, Apple Watch, and AirPods.

On the other hand, losses were led by 3M which was down 1.66% to 164.37. It was followed by Boeing which lost 0.91% at 345.68 and Travelers Companies Inc with a loss of 0.64% at 134.31.

November Employment Figures Scheduled Today

Today might be a more exciting trading day with the much-anticipated Non-Farm Payrolls report for November due at 1:30 pm GMT. This is the official US data on employment which measures the number of jobs generated outside of the farming industry. Expectations are high with the consensus at 181,000. This follows after the economy generated 137,000 jobs back in October. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate is eyed to remain steady at 3.6%. Lastly, average hourly earnings for the month are expected to have been up by 0.3%.

There is some skepticism that the report may fail to impress. Most of this is brought about by the fact that the ADP report for the same month only printed at 67,000 and missed forecasts at 137,000. The privately-produced report is widely regarded as an indicator of the government’s official employment report.

On the other hand, the employment component of the ISM non-manufacturing PMI report showed that the services industry continued to post strong job growth in November. This can make for a strong argument that the NFP report may be able to impress.

Remember that much of the Federal Reserve’s optimism is anchored on a strong labor market. Disappointing figures could trigger the central bank to re-assess its current monetary policy stance.

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Dow Jones Outlook

The blue-chip stock index could rally on positive US data. If there are enough buyers in today’s trading, it could revisit its historic highs just above the 28,000 psychological handle. On the other hand, disappointing labor market figures could raise concerns about the US economy and push the Dow Jones lower. If sellers dominate today’s trading, the index could revisit its July and September highs at 27,240.0.Download our latest quarterly market outlook for our longer-term trade ideas.

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