Non-farm payroll: US jobs in biggest jump this year

Emma Haslett
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The figures were good news for the US economy, which has shown signs of weakness in recent months (Source: Getty)

After weeks of disappointing economic figures, there's finally a glimmer of hope for the US economy: non-farm payroll figures out today showed the number of job openings jumped by 280,000 in May. That's up from 221,000 in April - and the best figure this year.

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The figures pushed the dollar up 1.61 per cent against the euro, to €0.9041. It jumped just over one per cent against Sterling, to £0.6575.

"The markets are increasingly betting that the more modest jobs figures seen at the start of the year were a temporary lull," suggested David Lamb, head of dealing at forex firm FEXCO.

The news comes against a background of increased concern for growth in the US economy. Yesterday the International Monetary Fund (IMF) took time out of its negotiations with Greece to cut its forecast for US growth to three per cent in 2015, from 3.1 per cent previously.

It also warned the Federal Reserve against raising interest rates before the first half of 2016, saying "pockets of vulnerability" had emerged.

"Deferring rate increases would provide valuable insurance against the risk of disinflation, policy reversal and ending back at zero policy rates," it suggested.

The news came several weeks after figures from the US Commerce Department suggested GDP increased just 0.2 per cent on an annual basis in the first quarter of 2015 - its worst quarter for a year.

With that in mind, Helal Miah, investment research analyst at The Share Centre, suggested today's figures should be taken positively by UK investors.

“These numbers paint a good picture of the US economy and therefore should be encouraging news for UK equity investors given our strong trade relations. However, this announcement does now have the potential to bring forward the timing of the first interest rate rise and as a result the US Dollar has appreciated mildly against most other currencies.”

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