Mark DeCambre, Sara Sjolin
The report showed that the U.S. economy added 151,000 jobs in August, while the unemployment rate remained steady at 4.9%. Those figures were weaker than economists polled by MarketWatch, who had expected 170,000 jobs to be added to the U.S. economy in August, and a broader-market consensus for about 180,00 jobs.
Read: U.S. jobs growth slows in August
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average YMU6, +0.29% added 57 points, or 0.3%, to 18,452, while those for the S&P 500 index ESU6, +0.28% tacked on 6.70 points to 2,173.75. Futures for the Nasdaq-100 index NQU6, +0.38% were up 20.25 points, or 0.4%, to 4,797.
The Federal Open Market Committee is set to next meet on Sept. 20-21 and in the past weeks Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen and the central bank’s No. 2 Stanley Fischer have both indicated a rate increase could occur within the next three months in an effort to resume normalization of monetary policy.
The stock market has benefited from lower rates since it translates into cheaper borrowing costs for U.S. companies, and the market has tended to the bristle at the idea of those ultraloose levels ending soon.
“While the report is solid and could be subject to a positive revision, it falls short of providing a resounding vote for a September move by the Fed,” said Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial.
Chris Gaffney, president of World Markets at EverBank, said, “Fed Chair Yellen has continuously stated she is data dependent, and this data just doesn't support a rate increase in September, and if the data continues to match the recent pattern of disappointment we could see the chances of any rate increase in 2016 fade away.
For the week, all three major benchmarks were on track for gains of less than 0.2%.