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    Weak payrolls lower stock futures

    On Friday, American stock futures edged lower after official data showed the US economy gained fewer jobs than expected in January. However, other details in the report appeared to be quite positive.   

    Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average sagged 49 points to 16,279. The &P 500 index lost7.8 points, dropping to 1,899.75. Futures for the Nasdaq-100 index were deprived of 15.75 points, they traded at 4,140.    

    According to the Labor Department in January, American economy gained up to151,000 jobs. Of course, that greatly differs from the recent forecast of 180,000 given by some economists. However, investors appreciated the stronger than expected growth in average hourly earnings as well as an evident decline in the unemployment rate to 4.9%.  

    The disappointing jobs growth number fits the overall picture of faltering American economic growth, which has emerged since last year. Then, investors faced gloomy readings on manufacturing, productivity, not to mention a disappointing report on service-sector activity from Wednesday. Then, the information of suspended by the Fed interest-rate hikes provoked a sell-off in the greenback.                 

    Currently investors as well as analysts are turning their attention to how the Fed is going to interpret the number.  

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