US stocks and Treasuries slipped on Thursday, while the dollar strengthened, after a stronger than expected jobs report underlined the labour market’s resilience in the face of the Federal Reserve’s aggressive campaign to tackle high inflation.
Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 lost 1.2 per cent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite fell 1.5 per cent, erasing small gains registered in the previous session. Meanwhile, Amazon’s shares shed 2.4 per cent a day after the ecommerce giant announced plans to fire 18,000 employees.
The declines came after US private sector employment rose by 235,000 in December, ahead of estimates, according to payroll processor ADP. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a gain of 150,000, suggesting the US labour market remains tight even as the economy shows signs of slowing. Initial unemployment claims for the last week of December, meanwhile, fell to 204,000 from a revised 223,000 the previous week.
ADP’s figures support the view — expressed in the minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee’s December meeting, which were released on Wednesday — that labour market conditions in the world’s biggest economy are exacerbating upward pressure on wages and prices.
“Despite the tightening implemented to date, the [FOMC] still sees the labour market as tight and inconsistent with price stability,” said Michael Gapen, US economist at Bank of America.
Read more about today’s market moves.