Bloomberg News

U.S. Stock Futures Fall as G-20 Disagrees on Boosting IMF Role

November 04, 2011

Nov. 4 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. stock-index futures retreated as Group of 20 leaders disagreed on boosting the International Monetary Fund’s resources to fight Europe’s debt crisis, overshadowing an unexpected drop in the American jobless rate.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index expiring in December fell 0.3 percent to 1,252.3 at 8:43 a.m. in New York.

The 80,000 increase in payrolls for October was less than forecast and followed gains in the prior two months that were revised up by 102,000, Labor Department figures showed. The unemployment rate fell to a six-month low of 9 percent from 9.1 percent even as the labor force expanded.

Futures rose after the jobs data, only to resume earlier losses triggered when German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the G-20 failed to agree on boosting the resources of the International Monetary Fund to fight the European debt crisis.

Stocks rose for a second day yesterday, restoring a 2011 gain for the S&P 500, as Greece moved closer to accepting a financial bailout and the European Central Bank cut its benchmark interest rate to bolster economies reeling from the region’s debt crisis.

The S&P 500 has rallied 15 percent since Oct. 3 after concern that Europe’s debt crisis would trigger another recession dragged it down 19 percent from this year’s high on April 29. The rebound was spurred by better-than-estimated corporate earnings and economic data and growing confidence that leaders would help Greece avoid default and stop the spread of the euro-area crisis.

Per-share earnings beat estimates at about three-quarters of the 404 companies in the S&P 500 that released results since Oct. 11, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Net income grew 16 percent for the group on a 12 percent increase in sales.

The Citigroup Economic Surprise Index for the U.S., which measures the rate at which data is beating or trailing economists’ forecasts, is at 13.6, near the six-month high of 18 reached on Oct. 31. The index has rebounded from minus 117.2 on June 3, when it showed economic data was trailing estimates by the most since January 2009.

--Editor:

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael P. Regan at mregan12@bloomberg.net


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