US stocks traded mixed on Friday, as investors digested the latest payrolls report which reinforced the view that Fed may accelerate its timeline for rate hikes. Although only 199K jobs were created in December, less than half of the market forecasts, the jobless rate fell to 3.9% and hourly wages surged 4.7% from a year ago. The Dow Jones was little changed after falling 0.3% earlier in the session as gains in bank stocks amid expectations of higher yields were offset by tech losses. Meanwhile, the S&P slipped 0.4% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropped 1% to book its worst week since February 2021, down more than 4%. Among single stocks, chipmakers such as Nvidia and Microchip more than 4%. Also, Tesla erased 3.5% and Netflix lost 2%. Still, on the week, the S&P traded 1.9% lower and the Dow Jones slipped 0.3%.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index edged 0.1% higher to close at the 21,084 level on Friday, as investors balanced fresh domestic and US labor market data. The Canadian economy added 54.7 thousand jobs during December, nearly twice as much as markets expected. On the corporate front, energy stocks traded 0.9% higher to extend last session’s gains. Cameco Corp gained after announcing it could resume yearly production of 24 million pounds of uranium in North America if Kazatomprom’s supply chains were to be interrupted due to Kazakhstan’s political turmoil. On the week, the index extended losses and fell 0.7%.
The Nikkei 225 Index inched down 0.03% to close at 28,478 while the broader Topix Index shed 0.07% to 1,996 on Friday, as investors avoided making big bets ahead of a long weekend in Japan, while markets continued to assess the impact of a potentially faster-than-expected policy normalization by the Federal Reserve. Japanese technology firms mostly declined, with losses from Lasertec (-1.71%), Keyence (-2.93%) and Recruit Holdings (-1.07%), among others. Meanwhile, expectations of higher interest rates lifted shares of banks and other financial firms, led by gains in Mitsubishi UFJ (3.44%), Sumitomo Mitsui (1.59%) and Mizuho Financial (1.08%).
The FTSE 100 rose 0.4% to close at 7,479 on Friday, trying to recover from a 0.9% loss in the previous session, as mining stocks were supported by firmer copper prices and as investors digested a batch of economic data released during the session. UK house prices in December were 9.8% higher than a year earlier, the sharpest annual increase since July 2007, while a PMI survey suggested the country's construction sector growth eased to a three-month low as the rapid spread of Omicron had an impact on the economic recovery. On the week, the index added 1.3%, extending gains for a third consecutive week.
The CAC 40 Index closed 0.4% lower at 7,219 on Friday, as investors digested fresh macroeconomic data from both the Eurozone and the US. Consumer inflation in the euro area rose to an all-time high of 5% on the year in December, according to preliminary estimates. On the corporate front, luxury goods were among the hardest hit, with Hermes (-4%), LVMH (-2%), and Christian Dior (-3.1%) trading on the red. Tech stocks also continued to slide, led by Capgemini (-2.2%) and Dassault Systemes (-1.8%). On the other hand, STMicroelectronics jumped 3.2% after preliminary corporate results were better than expected. The semiconductor manufacturer’s revenue rose to USD 3.56 billion in Q4 2021, compared to USD 3.24 billion in the same period of the previous year.
The FTSE MIB erased early gains to close 0.1% lower at 27,618 on Friday, slightly extending last session’s 1.8% loss. Consumer inflation in the euro area rose to 5% in December according to preliminary data, the highest ever recorded. On the corporate front, industrial stocks led the losses, driven by recently demerged Cnh Industrial (-1.6%) and Iveco Group (-2.9%). Luxury clothing also traded on the red, led by Brunello Cucinelli (-3.2%) and Moncler (-2.8%). On the other hand, STMicroelectronics jumped 3.7% after publishing preliminary expectations of USD 3.56 billion in net revenue, 11.2% higher than the corresponding period in the previous year and 140bps above the upper limit of the firm’s reported range.
The BSE Sensex ended 142.81 points or 0.24% higher to close at 59,744.65 on Friday, rebounding from yesterday’s loss despite surging COVID cases, as the severity of the Omicron cases seemed to be low and as investors await the upcoming quarterly earnings season. Gains were driven by capital goods, consumer goods and a few banks. Among the individual stocks, Asian Paints (+1.79%), Tata Consulting Services (+1.26%), Nestle India (+1.23%), Ultra Cement Company (+1.18%) and ICICI bank (+1.06%) were the top gainers. On the week the BSE booked a 2.5% gain.
The S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 1.29% to close at 7,453 on Friday, recouping some losses after a tech-led selloff in the previous session, as bank stocks gained sharply amid a steady rise in global bond yields. Investors were looking at banks and other stocks that stand to benefit from rising interest rates and strong economic growth. Gains in financials were propelled by giant lenders Commonwealth Bank (2.68%), ANZ Bank (2.6%), Westpac Banking (1.26%) and National Australia Bank (1.55%). Energy stocks also rose amid strong oil and coal prices, led by gains in Woodside Petroleum (2.21%), Santos Ltd (2.88%) and Whitehaven Coal (3.34%). Other companies in the healthcare, mining, technology and consumer sectors mostly advanced as well. Meanwhile, fibre cement maker James Hardie’s shares dropped 4.13% after the company ousted CEO Jack Truong for breaching code of conduct. The benchmark stock index ended a see-saw week nearly flat, gaining just 0.12%.
The Shanghai Composite shed 0.18% to 3,580 while the Shenzhen Component fell 0.59% to 14,344 on Friday, as mainland stocks ended a volatile week sharply lower, forcing the securities regulator to ease investors’ nerves by pledging stability. China’s securities regulator vowed to adopt measures to “firmly” prevent big fluctuations in the market. Montreal-based firm BCA Research also warned of earnings setbacks in Chinese firms as the world’s second-largest economy decelerates. The odds of a significant earnings contraction over the coming 12 months are as high as 70%, according to the firm’s model, given mixed recovery signals. While the official PMI and other growth indicators improved slightly in December, the underlying sub-indices were weak. Meanwhile, China’s state planner said the country should prioritize stabilizing growth, citing it has big room for policy adjustments. Consumer, manufacturing and technology firms declined, while financial stocks gained.