Indices rise after mixed US jobs data

Stocks have advanced following a mixed picture from this afternoon’s US non-farm payrolls and unemployment reports.

The number of people on the payrolls in May increased by 175,000, slightly higher-than-expected, but at the same time the unemployment rate unexpectedly ticked up to 7.6%.

Initially, equity markets dipped over worries that more people on the payrolls might indicate a stronger US economy, but the news of higher unemployment actually pushed stocks higher. Investors were concerned that the US Federal Reserve might reduce the size of its stimulus package, but with unemployment rising the Fed are more likely to keep the current policy unchanged.

Over the past three weeks, global equity markets have come off highs due to profit-taking and speculation that the Fed might curtail its bond-buying scheme, but we could see the beginning of an uptrend after today’s reports.

The Dow opened around 70 points higher at 15,110, with traders now more confident in a continuation of the stimulus package from the US central bank.

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