* Strong jobs growth sends dollar up vs yen
* U.S. stocks set record highs on jobs data
* Brent rises above $104, U.S. unemployment at 4-year low
* Government debt slumps on strong U.S. jobs report
By Herbert Lash
NEW YORK, May 3 The U.S. dollar climbed more
than 1.0 percent against the yen and global equity markets
surged on Friday, boosted by a U.S. labor report showing
stronger-than-expected jobs growth in April.
Wall Street stocks surged to record highs, while government
debt prices dropped.
U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose 165,000 last month and the
jobless rate fell to a four-year low of 7.5 percent, the Labor
Department said. Economists expected payrolls to rise 145,000
and the unemployment rate to hold steady at 7.6 percent.
Wall Street and most European indices rallied more than 1
percent on the news of the resilient U.S. labor market. The drop
in the jobless rate reflected a gain in employment, rather than
people leaving the workforce.
The benchmark S&P 500 stock index broke through the 1,600
mark for the first time, and the Dow surpassed the 15,000 mark,
also for the first time, as both indices set record highs.
Crude oil, copper and other commodities' prices also
rallied, while government debt slumped on the data.
The strong jobs data overshadowed an industry report that
showed the pace of growth in the vast U.S. services sector
slowed in April to its weakest pace in nine months.
"The employment number was definitely the trigger for
today's rally," said Michael Korn, president at Skokie Energy in
Princeton, New Jersey.
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 163.13
points, or 1.10 percent, at 14,994.71. The Standard & Poor's 500
Index was up 19.53 points, or 1.22 percent, at 1,617.12.
The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 43.57 points, or 1.30
percent, at 3,384.19.
In Europe, the FTSEurofirst 300 of leading shares
rose 1.05 percent to 1,219.14, while MSCI's all-country world
equity index rose 0.99 percent to 371.55.
The dollar rose 1.01 percent to 98.94 yen, on pace
for its biggest one-day rise in two weeks, while the euro
rebounded a day after President Mario Draghi of the European
Central Bank said it was technically ready for negative deposit
The euro was up 0.49 percent to $1.3127.
German Bund futures fell to a session low of
146.11, down 105 ticks on the day, while the benchmark 10-year
U.S. Treasury note was down 31/32 in price to yield
Brent crude was up $1.88 at $104.73 a barrel, while
U.S. crude gained $1.87 to $95.86 a barrel.
"The idea that employment is holding as well as it is in the
face of the fiscal headwinds the economy is currently enduring
is a very positive sign of the economy's underlying fundamental
improvements," said Russell Price, a senior economist at
Ameriprise Financial Services.
The better jobs data comes just a month after the Bank of
Japan promised to inject about $1.4 trillion into its economy to
spur growth and end decades of deflation.
By increasing liquidity, three of the world's major central
banks have fueled a rally in share and bond markets that has
driven many benchmark indexes back up to levels last seen before
the financial crisis began.