GLOBAL MARKETS-Stocks, U.S. yields up on mixed data

Fri Jan 4, 2013 12:52pm EST

* Dollar near highest vs yen since July 2010
    * Treasuries slip but sharply pare losses
    * Oil, gold extend declines


    By Rodrigo Campos
    NEW YORK, Jan 4 (Reuters) - World shares edged higher and
Treasury yields rose on Friday after data showed the U.S.
economy still on a path to recovery but not growing so strongly
as to hasten an end to Federal Reserve stimulus.
    European equities rose on signs that Europe may be through
the worst of its economic slump. 
    The vast U.S. services sector grew in December at its
fastest clip in 10 months, boosted by a rise in new orders,
according to a report from the Institute for Supply Management.
    "The economy is recovering at the hands of Fed policy and it
is getting restored to a point of critical mass where the Fed
will eventually remove itself," said Andrew Wilkinson, chief
economic strategist at Miller Tabak & Co in New York.
    "We could see the central bank tapering off its bond buying
across 2013, but do not see it walking away from low interest
rates quickly."
    An index of global shares was on track to post its best week
in six, and its sixth week of gains in the last seven, as a
last-minute budget deal in the United States and strengthening
global economic data drew investors into riskier assets.
    The Dow Jones industrial average rose 22.41 points or
0.17 percent, to 13,413.77, the S&P 500 gained 4.61
points or 0.32 percent, to 1,463.98 and the Nasdaq Composite
 added 3.31 points or 0.11 percent, to 3,103.88.
    A 2 percent decline in Apple shares cut gains on
the Nasdaq.
    An MSCI index of global shares rose 0.2
percent and was up nearly 3 percent for the week, its best
weekly performance since late November. A gauge of equities
across Europe closed up 0.4 percent.    
    The pace of U.S. job growth slowed slightly in December,
keeping the unemployment rate steady at 7.8 percent but there
were indications of a slow but steady recovery in the data.
 
    The stubbornly high U.S. unemployment rate was unlikely to
make the Federal Reserve rethink its easy-money policies, which
have been propping up the recovery.
    Fed minutes from its latest meeting, published on Thursday,
suggested the U.S. central bank could hasten the end of its
asset purchases, erased gains in stocks and pushed benchmark
Treasury yields to eight-month highs. 
    Tom Porcelli, chief U.S. economist at RBC Capital markets in
New York, said with the payrolls data "basically where it was
when the Fed decided to do more quantitative easing last month,"
a change in policy was not on the horizon - a bullish call for
stocks.
    The dollar rose to a near 2-1/2 year high against the yen on
speculation of more monetary easing in Japan.
    "The reason that the dollar is holding up better against the
yen than anywhere else is because the main focus is on the
Japanese monetary policy rather than the U.S. monetary policy,"
said Vassili Serebriakov, FX Strategist at BNP Paribas in New
York.
    Tentative signs that the euro zone economy may have passed
the worst of its downturn also supported risk assets. 
    Markit's Eurozone Composite PMI, which gauges business
activity across thousands of the region's companies, rose in
December to 47.2, from 46.5 in November - below the 50 line
which divides growth from contraction but at its highest level
since March last year. 
    Benchmark U.S. Treasury yields resumed their
sharp climb following the ISM report, after having cut the
advance following the jobs report.
    The 10-year U.S. Treasury note was last down 6/32, with the
yield at 1.931 percent. Yields earlier hit a more than
eight-month high of 1.977 percent.
    Bund futures were last down 0.4 percent at 142.95.
    Brent crude shed 1.1 percent to $110.92 a barrel
while U.S. crude was down 0.4 percent at $92.53.
    Spot gold pared sharp losses but was still on track
to close at its lowest since August. It was last at $1,644.70 an
ounce.
A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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