Seoul, South Korea
International stock markets were dulled today by caution ahead of the monthly U.S. jobs report after the European Central Bank delayed any additional stimulus to early next year. Stocks in Hong Kong and mainland China were the only bright spot, extending gains from the previous sessions. Futures point to little opening movement on Wall Street. Benchmark U.S. crude fell below $66.50 a barrel. The dollar gained against the yen and the euro.
- If the predictions are right, today's jobs data from the government will be another upbeat step in the U.S. economic recovery. Economists surveyed by FactSet say the economy likely generated 225,000 jobs last month and that the unemployment rate remained 5.8 percent. It would be the 10th straight month of job gains above 200,000 and the latest sign that the United States is outshining other struggling economies.
- The top Japanese auto safety official acknowledged today that Japan's recall system needs an overhaul to better respond to global problems highlighted by the debacle over Takata air bags that can explode. Masato Sahashi says Japan is working with the U.S. authorities and with automakers to try to get to the bottom of the problem. The Japanese supplier is under fire for air bags in which inflators can explode, hurling shrapnel. At least five deaths and dozens of injuries have been reported. The Takata recalls have now grown to 14 million vehicles globally.
- German factory orders rose strongly in October in a development that's likely to ease concerns over the state of Europe's largest economy. The Federal Statistical Office says that October orders were up 2.5 percent over September. Domestic orders provided the main impetus behind the rise, spiking 5.3 percent. Foreign orders swelled only 0.6 percent. The agency also upwardly revised the previous month to show a 1.1 percent rise.
- Besides November employment data, the government will release October's international trade data and factory orders. The Federal Reserve will release consumer credit data for October.