Jobs data will drive direction on what would otherwise be a quiet summer Friday. For now, Wall Street looks firmly higher and world stock markets are mostly in positive territory. China's Shanghai index bounced back after a 5.5% decline yesterday.
Oil is trading higher and nearing $73 per barrel .
Payroll employment is expected to have increased by 128,000 in June after a 157,000 increase in May, according to a Dow Jones survey. Average hourly earnings are expected to rise by 0.3%, and the jobless rate is expected to be the same at 4.5%.
There are two scenarios that could impact stocks -- a very high number that shows a heating of inflation or a very low number that shows slowing growth.
In pre-earnings news, Microsoft took a hit in the game world. After the bell, Microsoft said it would take a charge of more than $1 billion in the most recent quarter to cover costs for a new extended warranty program for Xbox 360.
Meanwhile, UBS ousted CEO Peter Wuffli and named Marcel Rohner to replace him after the collapse of a hedge fund and other issues
Private Equity Power
Apollo Management is in talks to sell a stake to an investment arm of the Abu Dhabi government, following in the steps of Blackstone which sold a stake to China.
The Chicago Mercantile Exchange is raising its bid for CBOT Holdings for the third time this morning. Wall Street analysts this morning are putting "hold" ratings on Hilton stock, dropping their "buy" ratings. Hilton is not expected to attract another bidder after the $26 billion offer from Blackstone Group .