Stocks Are Getting Smoked

Stocks are losing serious ground after the December Jobs Report.

The report showed that payrolls grew by 252,000 in December, better than the 240,000. 

The unemployment rate also fell to 5.6%, the lowest since June 2008.

About an hour after the open, stocks were starting to lose some real ground, with the Dow down as much as 158 points, the S&P 500 down as much bas 16 points, and the Nasdaq falling as much as 34 points.

Friday’s drop in stocks comes after the markets staged huge rallies on Wednesday and Thursday to erase losses suffered at the start of the year. 

Overall, the report was a bit of a mixed bag and had something for everybody

Those arguing that the Fed is looking for total job gains are likely to argue that the Fed is on track to raise interest rates later this year, while those who think the Fed is looking for wage growth will say we are still far away from this. 

The price of oil is also little changed early Friday, with West Texas Intermediate crude trading at around $US48.70 a barrel. Gold is also little changed, trading near $US1,210 an ounce. 

The euro was weakening slightly against the dollar, trading near 1.181 to the dollar, while the dollar was losing some ground against both the British pound and the Japanese yen. 

In Europe, stocks were slightly lower across the board after huge gains on Thursday. 

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