REFILE-US STOCKS-Volatility spikes after strong payrolls; Wall St to open flat

viernes 5 de diciembre de 2014 10:14 GYT

(Adds dropped title of Jacobsen in fourth paragraph.)

* Futures: Dow up 16 pts, S&P off 2 pts, Nasdaq down 1 pt

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, Dec 5 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were mixed in volatile trading on Friday after November payrolls came in much stronger than anticipated, raising expectations a rate hike from the Federal Reserve may come sooner than previously thought.

Payrolls came in at 321,000 for November, way above the 230,000 estimated, while the unemployment rate held steady at 5.8 percent.

The U.S. dollar strengthened across the board and short-term interest-rate futures traders were pricing in the first Fed rate hike for July 2015, slightly earlier than before the data.

"We might see a situation where the Fed achieves its full employment target well before it achieves its inflation target. People are trying to see how the Fed will navigate that situation," said Brian Jacobsen, chief portfolio strategist at Wells Fargo Funds Management in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin.

"Will they allow the unemployment rate to drop significantly lower or will they worry about the economy overheating? That's why we see (equity) futures all over the place."

Futures briefly turned negative after the data, before rising a little. Before the open, futures were mixed and still volatile.   Continuación...