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Friday Morning Business Brief

May 4, 2012, 5:36 AM

Friday Morning Business Brief

The tone of today's trading on Wall Street could well be established about an hour before the opening bell. That's because the session will likely be fully focused on the jobs report. In Thursday trading, the Dow lost 62 points, or 0.5 percent, to 13,207. The S&P 500 fell 11 points to 1,392, while the Nasdaq composite declined 36 points, or 1.2 percent, to 3,024. Futures trading suggests a lower open.

  • International stock markets were mostly lower today ahead of U.S. employment data that will give a big clue to the robustness of the recovery in the world's No. 1 economy. Benchmark crude oil fell under $101 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The dollar gained against the euro but fell against the yen.
  • Analysts expect today's Labor Department report will show the economy added about 163,000 jobs in April. The unemployment report is thought to have been unchanged at 8.2 percent.
  • Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says there's reason for optimism about economic relations with China. He told President Hu Jintao that China's moves toward a more market-oriented exchange rate are "very promising" and said economic relations are improving despite occasional tensions. Geithner and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Hu Friday.
  • A disgruntled Yahoo shareholder questioned the qualifications and integrity of recently hired CEO Scott Thompson after exposing a misrepresentation about the executive's education. Hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb gained more leverage in his efforts to topple the board when he discovered Thompson doesn't have a bachelor's degree in computer science from a small college in Easton, Massachusetts, as Yahoo stated in a regulatory filing last week.

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