The US dollar firmed on upbeat jobs data released on Wednesday which raised the chances of a rate hike by the Federal Reserve in December.
A report from payroll processor ADP showed that the US private sector created 182,000 jobs last month. Economists expected to show an increase of 180,000 jobs. It was a slightly slower pace than the 200,000 jobs added in September, but markets reacted positively to the October number as the difference was marginal.
Construction employment and trade/transportation and utilities experienced the biggest gains, with both sectors adding 35,000 jobs each.
Financial services and professional and business services also posted gains last month. The manufacturing sector, meanwhile, shed 2,000 jobs, echoing recent reports on the sector.
In fact, a report earlier this week from the Institute for Supply Management showed factory growth nearly stalled last month.
The data come two days before the closely-watched monthly employment report from the Labor Department. Economists are expecting the world’s biggest economy to have added 182,000 jobs last month, up from 142,000 the month prior.
The jobs report has taken on even more significance than usual because it will be the second-to-last major reading on the labor market the Federal Reserve gets before it decides whether to increase short-term interest rates in December for the first time in nearly a decade. The central bank has said its decision will depend on a wide range of economic data, but it pays the closest attention to the slack in the labor force and measures of inflation.
Fed funds futures imply traders see the odds of liftoff coming in December at about 50-50.
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