Stock Market Today - Jobs Numbers in Focus, European Markets Rally, Takeover Bids Abound

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Jobs, jobs, and more jobs are the market's focus.

Wall Street is laser-focused on the U.S. non-farm payrolls report this morning as investors eagerly await the news and will try and read whether a strong number will accelerate the Fed's time to raise interest rates, while a weak number could continue to push out the inevitable hike.

Consensus expects 220,000 jobs to have been added in April and the unemployment rate is expected to come in at 5.4%, down 10 basis points from last month.

Stock index futures indicated a higher open for Wall Street while European markets rallied as Conservative David Cameron won a surprisingly decisive victory in elections, to retain his position as Prime Minister in the U.K.

In Greece, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told investors to expect a happy ending to the current intense negotiations with the IMF and the EU over Greek's debt payments.

In M&A news, Monsanto (MON) is being rebuffed by Syngenta (SYT) as Syngenta says the $45 billion takeover offer undervalues the company. And yesterday, rumors surfaced that Yelp (YELP) has been looking for a buyer, leading that stock to pop 23%.

Notable earnings reports this morning include: AOL (AOL), WhiteWave Foods (WWAV),Crocs (CROX), and Liberty Media (LMCA).

Happy Trading!

  • European markets, especially London's index FTSE 100, rallied as election results in the U.K. are indicating a victory of the incumbent Conservatives. The pound also rallied on the result.
  • Chinese exports contracted unexpectedly, while imports fell as well in April. Exports fell 6.4% last month from a year earlier, while imports tumbled by a deeper-than-forecast 16.2%.
  • Agrochemicals firm Syngenta (SYT) on Friday rejected a $45 billion takeover offer from Monsanto (MON), saying the offer undervalued the Swiss firm and did not fully take into account regulatory risks.
  • Microsoft (MSFT) has no plans to pursue Salesforce.com (CRM), sources told Reuters. Microsoft considers Salesforce's current market valuation expensive, one of the sources said. It is possible that Microsoft could review a bid for Salesforce in the long term, according to another source.
  • BG Group said it was still happy with Shell's (RDS.A) takeover offer of $70 billion despite the near-20% rise in oil prices since the offer was made a month ago.

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