LONDON, March 8 European stocks were seen opening higher on
Friday, buoyed by fresh signs of Chinese economic growth and on expectations of
a further pickup in U.S. employment.
Financial spreadbetters expected Britain's FTSE 100 to open 12 to 16
points higher, or up as much as 0.3 percent.
Germany's DAX was seen opening 11 to 18 points higher, or up by as
much as 0.2 percent, while France's CAC-40 was seen opening 7 to 10
points higher, or up by as much as 0.3 percent.
Asian shares rose on Friday, lifted by data that showed that China's
February exports grew 21.8 percent from a year earlier, more than double the
rise that had been forecast, while imports fell 15.2 percent, deeper than an 8.8
percent drop that analysts had expected.
The publication of U.S. non-farm payrolls employment data at 1330 GMT will
also be a key event for many investors on Friday.
Employers are expected to have added 160,000 jobs to their payrolls last
month, picking up slightly from January's 157,000 count, according to a Reuters
survey of economists.
While that would only be enough to hold the unemployment rate steady at 7.9
percent, it would be another sign of the economy's fundamental health, which has
already propelled the Dow Jones industrial average to record highs.
Capital Spreads dealer Jonathan Sudaria said some traders were expecting
that Friday's U.S. employment data would follow the positive trend of the U.S
ADP National Employment Report earlier this week, which showed that private
employers had added 198,000 jobs to payrolls last month.
"Markets are set to open with small gains as some traders bet that today's
data will follow the form of the positive ADP and claimant count figures earlier
this week," Sudaria wrote in a note.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had hit a 4-1/2 year
intraday high of 1,193.35 points earlier this week, closed down 0.1 percent at
1,185.17 points on Thursday.
MARKET SNAPSHOT AT 0617 GMT
LAST PCT CHG NET CHG
S&P 500 1,544.26 0.18 % 2.8
NIKKEI 12,283.6 2.64 % 315.54
MSCI ASIA <.MIASJ0000P 557.39 0.66 % 3.66
EUR/USD 1.309 -0.11 % -0.0014
USD/JPY 95.34 0.56 % 0.5300
10-YR US TSY 2.010 -- 0.02
10-YR BUND YLD 1.488 -- -0.01
SPOT GOLD $1,577.2 -0.07 % -$1.16
US CRUDE $91.41 -0.16 % -0.15
> GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian shares edge up, dollar at fresh peak vs yen
> U.S. STOCKS-Dow closes at another high, eyes turn to U.S. payrolls
> Nikkei hits new 4-1/2 year high, biggest weekly gain since Dec 2011
> TREASURIES-Prices fall as jobless data stirs optimism on economy
> FOREX-Dollar climbs to 3-1/2-year high vs yen before U.S. jobs
> PRECIOUS-Gold hovers near $1,580/oz; US jobs data in focus
> METALS-Copper steady, eyes first weekly gain in four on China prospects
> Brent slips below $111 after China data, U.S, payrolls eyed