NEW YORK, Oct 5 (Reuters) - The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8 percent in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama's re-election bid.
STORY: TABLE GRAPHIC: COMMENTS:
LANE NEWMAN, DIRECTOR OF FOREIGN EXCHANGE TRADING, ING CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK
"To be honest with you, I think it's a pretty good number. It's a surprise. That said, the jobless rate coming down to 7.8 percent has a lot to do with labor force participation. But overall, it's being taken as a strong number. That's the way the bond market is reacting. The market appears to want to buy dollars given this number and I don't see this as bearish for equities."
PETER JANKOVSKIS, CO-CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER , OAKBROOK INVESTMENTS, LISLE, ILLINOIS
"I'm shocked by the drop in the unemployment rate. I'm not really sure what to make of it.
"The revision to last month and falling in line (for September) suggests there probably is some justification for futures moving higher."
ROBERT BLAKE, SENIOR CURRENCY STRATEGIST, STATE STREET GLOBAL MARKETS, BOSTON
"We think it's a very strong report. The initial headline is bang on expectations but there is an 86,000 net revision upwards to past months and there was a huge gain in household employment. That pushed the unemployment rate down to 7.8 percent. It is good for risk but not good for the (U.S.) dollar and it will favor other North American currencies, such as Canada and Mexico. We still have European issues to deal with so we like selectively buying riskier currencies. We also had a very good number in Canada at the same time which is supportive of the same theme."
SEAN INCREMONA, ECONOMIST, 4CAST LTD, NEW YORK:
"There is a lot of stuff going on in this report. The headline doesn't look very inspiring but there was a big upward revision to the previous month that is mainly effecting the government sector. The underlying private payrolls growth is unimpressive, lower than expected in September and soft beforehand. Oppositely there was a big decline in the unemployment rate with a pretty healthy breakdown there with employment and the labor force higher.
"Generally we are still seeing a mixed underlying picture that is neither too impressive nor terrible."
ROBBERT VAN BATENBURG, HEAD OF GLOBAL RESEARCH, LOUIS CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK
"The household employment jumped up strongly. That's an important move. These are not government jobs. It's an impressive number."
DAVID MANN, SENIOR CURRENCY STRATEGIST, STANDARD CHARTERED, NEW YORK
"After the upward headline revisions, the payroll numbers are not as weak as people might think. Also, there's a lower jobless rate."
MARKET REACTION: STOCKS: U.S. stock index futures rose . BONDS: U.S. Treasury debt prices tumbled . FOREX: The dollar gained versus the yen and euro .
(Americas Economics and Markets Desk; +1-646 223-6300)
Keywords: USA ECONOMY/PAYROLLS