US stock futures rise amid positive US employment data

<p>US stock futures rose after it was revealed the US added 288,000 jobs in June.</p>

US stock futures rose after the government's nonfarm payrolls report revealed the world's first economy added 288,000 jobs in June.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) expiring in September rose 0.2 per cent to 1,972.30 at 9:02 am ET in New York, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average contracts gained 0.2 per cent, to 16,928.

Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at San Francisco-based Wells Capital Management, told Bloomberg: "This is stuff that is going to lead to upward revisions of second quarter growth rates and it starts off the third quarter in a real positive momentum place."

It was the fifth straight monthly job gain above 200,000. Over the past 12 months, the economy has added nearly 2.5 million jobs – 208,000 a month, the fastest year-over-year pace since May 2006.

Report beats analyst predictions

The unemployment rate dropped to 6.1 per cent, its lowest level since September 2008.

That figure beat analysts' expectations and is an encouraging sign for investors and policymakers after disappointing growth in the first quarter of 2014.

Economists attributed this first-quarter decline in output to a series of one-off factors like cold weather and a drawdown of business inventories from unsustainably high levels at the end of 2013.

Retail added over 40,000 new jobs while leisure and hospitality added 39,000. Manufacturing added 16,000 new jobs and construction added 6,000.

However, long-term unemployment remains an ongoing concern. The number of US job-seekers who have been out of work for over 27 weeks decreased by 293,000 in June, to 3.1 million people – around a third of those who are out of work.

"Long-term unemployment remains elevated, which is]a key concern for Janet Yellen," said Aberdeen Asset Management's Luke Bartholomew, quoted by the BBC.

"The big question for the US remains just how many of the long term unemployed will ever get back into work."

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