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* Stock markets rise after weaker-than-forecast U.S jobs
* STOXX 600 index up around 1 percent
* Utility and mining stocks outperform
* But SBM Offshore plunges
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Sept 2 European shares rose on Friday
with utility and mining stocks outperforming, as
weaker-than-expected U.S jobs data led investors to pare back
bets on an imminent U.S. interest rate hike.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index index was up 1.1
percent in late session trading, with the region's stock markets
moving higher after data on Friday showed that U.S. employment
growth slowed more than expected in August.
That in turn meant traders were now pricing in about even
odds for a December rate hike in the United States, with little
chance of a rise before then. Before the report, traders saw
better than even odds of a December rate increase.
The weaker-than-forecast jobs data also chimed in with tepid
U.S. ISM factory growth figures published on Thursday, again
reinforcing the expectation that the U.S. Federal Reserve would
raise rates later rather than sooner.
Lower interest rates are typically good for stocks, as it
means stocks offer comparatively better returns compared to
bonds and cash, while it also means that companies listed on
stock markets can have lower borrowing costs.
"So soon after a weak ISM reading, today's non-farm figures
may pour cold water on the prospect of a rate rise later this
month, despite the Fed's upbeat assessment of the economy in
August," said Nancy Curtin, Chief Investment Officer of Close
Brothers Asset Management.
The STOXX Europe 600 Utilities outperformed with a
1.8 percent rise, with France's Veolia climbing 3.8
percent as investors welcomed the company's issuance of a 1
billion Renminbi 'Panda' bond.
Mining stocks also outperformed, with the sector
boosted by a drop in the dollar after the relatively weak U.S.
jobs data, since a weaker dollar makes commodities priced in the
U.S. currency more affordable for global investors.
Among stocks to lose ground was SBM Offshore.
SBM plunged 11.5 percent after prosecutors in Brazil
rejected a deal allowing the Dutch energy services company to
avoid prosecution for corruption related to contracts with oil
(Additional reporting by Danilo Masoni in Milan; editing by