U.S. stocks essentially gave back all of Thursday's gains as a better than expected employment report perversely made investors nervous that the Federal Reserve may pull back the punch bowl. This gave support to the dollar which rose nearly 0.7%, but put the pain to stocks and commodities. The S&P 500 fell 0.9% and NASDAQ 1.3%.
- Employers added 171,000 people to their payrolls last month, the Labor Department said. The number exceeded forecasts, and the government also said 84,000 more jobs were created in August and September than initially estimated. The unemployment rate edged up to 7.9% from 7.8%.
- The average workweek was unchanged for the fourth month in a row at 34.4 hours.
- When discouraged jobseekers and those forced to work part-time jobs are included, the unemployment rate fell to 14.6% in October from 14.7%.
- Average hourly wages fell 1 cent to $23.58 in October. For the past 12 months wages have risen 1.6%, the slowest increase in 26 years.
- The U.S. has about 4.3 million fewer jobs now than it did before the recession.
Oil fell 2.6% to $84.86 a barrel. Gold dropped 2.4% to $1,675.20 an ounce while silver sunk 4.3% to $30.86.
Britain's FTSE 100 gained 0.1%, the DAX in Germany added 0.4%, and France's CAC 40 gained 0.5%.
Japan's Nikkei rose 1.2% while the Shanghai Composite gained 0.6%.