US futures rise, dollar on standby ahead of jobs report

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US stock futures are trading higher and the dollar is standing pat as investors await the release of February’s nonfarm payrolls report.

The closely watched report, which comes on the back of Wednesday’s blockbuster ADP jobs number, is expected to show a 200,000 gain in jobs last month, following a 227,000 increase in January.

Barring an extreme surprise decline, the report is expected to all but seal the case for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates when it meets next week.

Ahead of the report, futures are pointing to a 0.3 per cent gain for all three major indices following a week of lacklustre trading. The dollar – as measured by the DXY index – is largely unchanged while Treasury yields continue to edge higher as the sell-off in US government bonds enters its fifth straight day.

Yield on the 10 year note, which topped 2.6 per cent yesterday for the first time since mid-December, rose less than 1 basis points to 2.6092 per cent and yield on the more policy sensitive 2 year note crept up to 1.3757 per cent.

Gold, which offers no yield, remains under pressure, with prices down another 0.3 per cent at $1,197.25 a troy ounce.

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