IBM Down, Jobs Data Shows Hourly Wages on the Rise

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By Justin Lahart
Staff Reporter

Traders have mixed feelings about the

jobs report

.

Nonfarm payrolls

rose 175,000, below consensus estimates of 193,000. The

unemployment rate

came in at 5.2%, slightly below consensus estimates of 5.3%.

But hourly wages are up five cents, two cents above expectations, and that's causing some concern.

"It'll be a little bit higher," said one trader this morning.

Since then the

S&P 500

futures are have taken a sharp downturn, suggesting that things won't be so rosy. They've slipped more than 2.00. The yield on the 30-year Treasury bond is up 0.04% at 7.11%.

The

Dow

looks like it will be dragged down even further by a dog named Blue.

Early this morning, the chatter was that

IBM

(IBM) - Get Report

had been oversold on yesterday's negative "Heard on the Street" column. But then longtime IBM bull Daniel Mandresh of

Merrill Lynch

downgraded the company to a hold. IBM is trading before the bell at 128 3/8, down 2 3/4.

Ultrak

(ULTK)

warned that it expected to earn 16 to 18 cents a share for its first quarter. Back in February, the company said it was "comfortable" with

First Call

expectations of 21 cents. Last night, the company and

Checkpoint Systems

(CKP)

(which also warned it wouldn't hit estimates) called off their merger plans. Ouch.

Banyan Systems

(BNYN)

warned that it would lose 32 to 38 cents a share for its first quarter, well short of First Call expectations of a 15 cent loss.

Autocam

(ACAM) - Get Report

warned that its third-quarter earnings would come in at 18 to 20 cents a share. First Call consensus estimates had been for the company to earn 29 cents a share.

In Japan, the

Nikkei

fell 268.72 to close at 17,860.59 on futures-led selling. Reports that the government was extending its investigation of scandal-ridden

Nomura

, and that public works spending would drop by 10% over the next three years, contributed to the downward pressure.

Stocks were higher in Hong Kong, but many investors opted to stay on the sidelines ahead of the U.S. jobs data. The

Hang Seng

closed up 149.42 at 12,204.59.

The Frankfurt stock market, battered badly yesterday, licked its wounds in quiet trading ahead of the U.S. jobs report. A higher dollar helped export oriented stocks. The

Dax

closed at 3244.92, up 29.68.

The

FTSE

was moving moderately higher ahead of the jobs data. Since the numbers came out, it's stalled. The index is up 27.9 at 4242.50.