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* Nonfarm payrolls increase 136,000 in Sept
* August payrolls revised up to 168,000 from 130,000
* HP Inc falls on $1 bln charge from turnaround plan
* Futures up: Dow 0.22%, S&P 0.21%, Nasdaq 0.36% (Adds comment, jobs numbers and updates prices)
Oct 4 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set to open slightly higher on Friday after data showed a moderate increase in job growth in September, with the unemployment rate dropping to a 50-year low, diminishing worries of a sharp slowdown in the world’s largest economy.
The Labor Department’s closely watched monthly employment report on Friday showed nonfarm payrolls increased by 136,000 last month. August data was revised to show the creation of 168,000 jobs from the previously reported 130,000.
However, monthly wage growth was unchanged and manufacturing payrolls declined for the first time in six months, while the retail sector continued to shed jobs.
The data was not so dire “that the economy and the jobs market are falling off a cliff,” said John Velis, global macro strategist at BNY Mellon in New York.
“On the other hand, it’s not strong enough that it’s going to take out this additional Fed easing that has been priced into the curve the last few days.”
Equity markets have been roiled this week by bleak economic data including a dramatic contraction in U.S. factory activity and a softer-than-expected increase in private sectors jobs that raised fears of the world’s biggest economy sliding into a recession.
Expectations of a Federal Reserve interest rate cut soared to 90% on Thursday after services sector activity fell to a three-year low, from 40% on Monday, according to CME’s FedWatch tool. They stood at 83% on Friday after the jobs report.
Wall Street’s main indexes initially fell by 1% for the third day in a row on Thursday after the services data, but rebounded later in the day.
At 9:08 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 58 points, or 0.22%. S&P 500 e-minis were up 6 points, or 0.21% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 27.25 points, or 0.36%.
HP Inc fell 6.4% premarket after the PC maker said it would cut up to 16% of its workforce as part of a restructuring plan that would result in an overall charge of $1 billion.
Shares of Apple Inc rose 2.4% after reports that the company would ramp up iPhone 11 production.
Investors will also keep an eye on U.S. central bank chief Jerome Powell’s remarks on Friday for clues on what the Fed would do at its policy meeting later this month. He is due to speak at 2:00 p.m. ET (1800 GMT) in Washington. (Additional reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Arun Koyyur)
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