US stocks pause as employment grows

December 7, 2017

By IFCMarkets

Nasdaq rebounds while SP 500 dips

US broad stock market edged lower on Wednesday despite a recovery in technology stocks. The dollar continued strengthening helped by Canadian dollar decline after more cautious than expected Bank of Canada statement. The live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, gained 0.3% to 93.524. The S&P 500 slipped 0.3 points to 2629.27 as gains in technology shares were offset by losses in energy stocks. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.2% to 24140.91. Nasdaq composite index meanwhile rebounded 0.2% to 6776.38.

Negotiations to reconcile Senate and House tax bill differences are focused on corporate Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) in Senate’s bill. AMT is a provision which will make corporations pay a minimum tax of 20% if tax breaks make their tax bill too low. Economic data were positive showing solid employment growth in November: ADP’s November report on private sector jobs showed 190 thousand increase in jobs, above expectations for a 180 thousand growth.

European markets slide second session

European markets weakness continued on Wednesday led by technology and mining shares. The euro and British Pound slide against the dollar persisted. The Stoxx Europe 600 closed 0.1% lower. Germany’s DAX 30 fell 0.4% settling at 12998.85. France’s CAC 40 slipped 0.02% while UK’s FTSE 100 gained 0.3% to 7348.03. Indices opened mixed today.

Technology stocks selloff continued on concerns corporate Alternative Minimum Tax would hit technology companies harder than others. Pound dropped after UK Brexit Secretary David Davis said the government hadn’t carried out any economic assessment on how Britain’s exit from the European Union will impact different parts of the British economy.

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Technology recovery supports Asian indices

Asian stock indices are mostly higher as technology shares recovered following the selloff on Wall Street. Nikkei rose 1.5% to 22498.03 as yen declined against the dollar. Chinese stocks are down: the Shanghai Composite Index is 0.3% lower while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is 0.2% higher. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index rebounded 0.5% as Australian dollar slid against the greenback after smaller than expected October trade surplus.

Oil down on US gasoline stock jump

Oil futures prices are edging lower today. Prices ended lower yesterday despite the US Energy Information Administration report of more than expected drop in domestic crude supplies of 5.6 million barrels., However gasoline and distillate stockpiles both rose more than anticipated. February Brent crude fell 2.6% to $61.22 a barrel on Wednesday.


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