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The dollar slipped across the board, weighed down by persistent worries about the health of the U.S. housing market and concerns that a trade dispute between the United States and China is escalating.
Stocks are searching for direction after a 7-session winning streak for the Dow 30. European stocks are moving higher after yesterday's holiday there, and Asian stocks were mixed overnight.
Bank of Japan left monetary policy unchanged as widely expected on Tuesday, keeping the overnight call rate target at 0.50% for two months in a row after its rate hike in February.
Singapore's economy grew an annualized 7.2% in the first quarter, slowing from the fourth quarter rate but exceeding forecasts, while the country's central bank stuck to a policy of modest currency appreciation.
Stocks closed mixed on Monday after a modest follow through rally from Friday's strong jobs numbers quickly fizzled as investors looked ahead to quarterly earnings season. "I think with the next few days we're in a holding pattern waiting for earnings to appear," said Zachary Karabell, portfolio manager at Fred Alger Management.
The dollar was little changed, holding near a six-week high against the yen after strong U.S. jobs data drove investors to abandon expectations of a near-term Federal Reserve interest rate cut.
The Bank of Japan starts a two-day monetary policy meeting on Monday, with board members seen putting their heads together to prepare for an economic outlook report due later this month.
A stronger-than-expected employment report could send stocks lower on Monday. "Good news is bad news, it's a stronger number than some were hoping for because you don't want jobs to be picking up at this stage because inflation is becoming a problem," Marc Pado, chief market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald, told CNBC.com.
America's employers ramped up hiring in March, driving the unemployment rate down to a five-month low of 4.4 %. It was a surprisingly strong performance in an economy that has otherwise shown signs of sluggishness recently.
U.S. Treasury bond prices tumbled and yields rose in a holiday-shortened session Friday after the unemployment rate fell to a five-month low, signaling the economy could be stronger than expected.
The dollar surged against major currencies Friday after the March jobs report showed a The dollar gained broadly on Friday, hitting a five-week high against the yen, as a surprisingly strong U.S. jobs report reinforced the view that the Federal Reserve will leave interest rates alone and not cut them in the near term.
Asian markets finished mixed in the Good Friday session with Japan closing almost flat. But South Korea shares managed to squeeze out a gain for a third straight record. Most markets in Asia were closed for the holiday.
It’s time to take full advantage of the three-day weekend. Eat well and get plenty of rest because next week is packed with earnings and data for ye eager market participants starting off with the Bank of Japan's monthly policy meeting.
Despite a volatile first quarter, stocks aren't much above where they were at the beginning of the year. But even if the major averages aren't showing big gains, smart investors know where to look for growth opportuntities.
Stocks ended a short trading week higher, closing up for the sixth straight session as the major market indexes reflected a bullish bias ahead of Friday's jobs data and next week's start of quarterly earnings season."The market drifted higher all week long. I'll give you a dozen different reasons why it shouldn't but the markets just keep going up," Mike Driscoll, head of listed trading at Bear Stearns, told CNBC.com.
The dollar slid to a two-year low against the euro on Thursday as trade wound down ahead of a closely watched U.S. jobs report at the end of the week that may shed more light on the outlook for U.S. interest rates.
Rod Smyth, chief investment strategist for Wachovia Securities, told CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” that some overseas stocks offer greater growth prospects than their U.S. counterparts.“I think the most important thing that investors have to get their mind around is simply this: Is there going to be a recession in the next couple of years?” Smyth said Thursday. “We know the economy is slowing down. History tells us mid-cycle slowdowns are very good for stocks and that recessions are bad for stocks. If you can get your mind around the fact that we’re in a mid-cycle slowdown then you want to put money to work.”
New U.S. jobless claims rose a larger-than-forecast 11,000 last week, government data on Thursday showed, in a report adding to the mixed economic picture painted by other recent U.S. indicators.
The Bank of England kept interest rates on hold at 5.25% as widely expected Thursday.
Stocks closed higher as diminished tension in the Middle East set a positive tone for the major market indexes, which remained resilient despite lukewarm economic data. "The resolution between Iran and Britain took a dark cloud away, it's the best of all worlds," said Dan McMahon, head of listed trading at CIBC World Markets.
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