Stocks Rise As Investors Await U.S. Jobs Data For Fed Cues

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Asian shares were mostly higher on Friday as investors hoped U.S. jobs data due later might sway the Federal Reserve. To slow its current aggressive pace of interest rate hikes over the coming months.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) was up 0.56%, riding a strong Wall Street close overnight. Japan’s Nikkei (.N225) was up 1.2%, and shares in Seoul (.KS11) were up 0.46%, while Australia’s resource-heavy index was up 0.79%. European STOXX 50 futures rose 0.76%.

Overnight, tech stocks led a rally on Wall Street, lifting the S&P500 (.SPX) 1.84%, the Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) 2.68%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) 1.29%.
On Thursday, the ADP National Employment Report showed U.S. payrolls rising at a slower-than-expected pace last month.
Investors are now looking to the U.S. Labor Department’s comprehensive jobs report, due later on Friday. For confirmation of a slowdown in the employment market, which could convince the Fed to go slow on interest rate hikes for the rest of the year.

Inflation is the biggest worry for the Fed and global policymakers. Fed officials have said that U.S. interest rates would likely continue to be raised aggressively unless inflation moderates. Markets have locked in consecutive 50-basis-point Fed hikes in June and July.
The U.S. dollar currency index , which tracks the greenback against six major currencies, was at 101.770, pausing a rally. The yen has been kept under pressure by super-low interest rates in Japan, and was last steady at 129.80 per dollar. Having lost 2% on the greenback this week.
The benchmark 10-year yield was at 2.9204% while the 2-year yield. ‘Which tends to be sensitive to U.S. rate expectations, was down at 2.6484%.
Brent futures were at $117.17 per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude stood at $116.34.

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