Stock futures rose on Wall Street ahead of the release Friday of the August jobs report, set to be closely scrutinized for clues to whether the Federal Reserve will stick with raising interest rates.
Contracts on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) added 0.4%, or about 120 points, while S&P 500 (^GSPC) futures were up 0.3%. Nasdaq 100 futures put on 0.2%, after all three gauges closed out August with monthly losses.
After a data-packed week, investors are preparing for the highlight: the monthly US payrolls report. Investors will assess the data for clues to the health of the labor market and what that means for the future path of interest rates. Any sign of cooling could be taken as giving the Fed scope to ease off from hiking.
“We expect this labor market rebalancing to continue,” Powell said in a speech at the Jackson Hole Economic Symposium last week. “Evidence that the tightness in the labor market is no longer easing could also call for a monetary policy response.”
Elsewhere, manufacturing data out of China fanned hopes the world’s second-biggest economy, which has been struggling to recover from COVID-19, could be on the upturn. A private-sector survey showed factory activity rose unexpectedly in August.