* U.S. job growth accelerates in February in surprise report
* U.S. stock, oil futures climb after payrolls data
* Bond prices fall, European shares pare losses on report
By Herbert Lash
NEW YORK, March 7 U.S. stock and crude futures
jumped and the dollar strengthened on Friday after a report on
U.S. employment showed jobs growth was greater than expected
last month, easing fears a recent soft patch in the economy was
due to more than a harsh winter.
A leading European stock index pared losses, and government
debt prices fell after the U.S. Labor Department said employers
added 175,000 jobs to payrolls in February after creating
129,000 positions in January.
The U.S. unemployment rate, however, rose to 6.7 percent
from a five-year low of 6.6 percent. Economists polled by
Reuters had expected nonfarm payrolls to rise 149,000 and the
unemployment rate to hold steady.
"We may be seeing some growth returning. The economy may be
back to where it was before the weather distortions," said Craig
Dismuke, chief economic strategist at Vining Sparks in Memphis.
"At the base level it should be negative for bonds, but mildly
positive for stocks and the dollar."
U.S. short-term interest-rate futures contracts fell on the
jobs report, prompting some traders to price in an earlier date
for a rate hike from the Federal Reserve.
Contracts show markets are now assigning a roughly 53
percent chance of a first Fed rate hike in June 2015, based on
CME FedWatch, which tracks rate hike expectations using its fed
funds futures contracts.
The dollar jumped to a six-week high against the yen,
while the euro rose against the greenback.
The S&P 500 e-mini futures rose 7.5 points and were
above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking
into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on
Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 60 points
and Nasdaq 100 futures added 9.25 points.
U.S. Treasuries yields rose to 2.8042 percent,
with the price falling 18/32.
Spot gold fell 1.1 percent to $1,336.01 an ounce.
In Europe, the FTSEurofirst 300 pared losses to
trade down 0.07 percent, German Bund futures fell 28
ticks to 141.90 and British Gilts turned sharply negative.