U.S. stock index futures fell sharply on Friday after data showed the economy added jobs at a rapid pace last month, feeding into fears that the Federal Reserve could keep interest rates higher for longer in its fight against inflation.
The Labor Department’s report for nonfarm payrolls, showed the economy added 517,000 jobs in January, compared to an estimate of 185,000 additions.
The unemployment rate ticked down 3.4% in January from 3.5% in December.
The Fed delivered a quarter percentage point interest rate hike Wednesday. Traders’ bets of a 25 basis point rate hike at the Federal Reserve’s March meeting ticked up after the data while rates were seen peaking at 4.95% by June compared to 4.91% earlier.
At 8:35 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 170 points, or 0.5%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 41 points, or 0.98%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 204.25 points, or 1.59%.
Before the data, Dow e-minis were down 70 points, or 0.21%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 21.25 points, or 0.51%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 100.75 points, or 0.78%.