The June jobs report is due out today and traders will be closely examining the latest data from the Labor Department. On a shortened pre-holiday trading day Wednesday, The Dow finished 56 points higher. The S&P 500 rose a point. And the Nasdaq composite gained 10 points. Trading in futures points to gains at this morning's opening.
- International stock markets got a boost today on optimism that easy European and U.S. monetary policy will continue, as investors await a key U.S. jobs. Benchmark crude oil fell but remains above $101 on worries about Egypt. The dollar gained against the euro and fell against the yen.
- Economists are sounding upbeat ahead of today's government report on June employment. Economists predict that employers added 165,000 jobs last month, but the unemployment rate is expected to stay at a still-high 7.6 percent. But another solid month of hiring could signal the start of a stronger second half of the year.
- Officials say China is ready to discuss strengthening cybersecurity with U.S. officials at a high-level forum next week. The two-day Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington will also include talks on finance and climate change. Officials say China also wants Washington to help settle territorial disputes in East Asia.
- Samsung Electronics Co. reported record quarterly profit today but its shares tumbled on doubts its mainstay smartphone business can maintain rapid growth. Samsung estimated its April-June operating profit at a record high of 9.5 trillion won ($8.3 billion). That is a 47 percent jump from a year earlier and 8 percent growth from the previous quarter. But it fell short of forecasts by analysts.