World stocks mixed as markets await U.S. jobs, Ukraine heats up further

|By:, SA News Editor

Global equities are mixed ahead of the U.S. jobs report today and as government forces in Ukraine attempt to retake the rebel-held city of Slaviansk in the eastern part of the country.

Economists estimate that U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose by 210,000 in April after increasing 192,000 in March, while the unemployment rate fell to 6.6% from 6.7%.

"People are a bit nervous about payrolls," says market strategist Michael Hewson. "Last month, there was so much hype about it and it came out below expectations. They don't want to get caught out twice, so they are hedging their positions." The numbers should also give a better idea about how much the severe winter affected the economy in the early months of the year.

Japan -0.2% to 14458. Hong Kong +0.6% to 22261. China closed. India flat.

Euro Stoxx 50 -0.2%, London +0.1%, Paris -0.3%, Frankfurt +0.1%, Milan +0.5%, Madrid +0.2%.

U.S. stock futures: Dow +0.1%. S&P +0.1%. Nasdaq +0.1%