Friday's job numbers won't be enough to slow the pending Fed rate hike

  • Friday's job data are contradictory on the surface -- lots of jobs but little gain in wages -- but the purchasing management numbers were hot.
  • New data is not remotely soft enough to stop the Fed, or even to slow it.

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Financial markets are freezing like the scenes in sci-fi movies, jagged lines of frost hissing and crackling across trading floors. On election day the S&P (Standard & Poor) 500 was 2139. By December 20, elated by coming stimulus, tax cuts and regulatory relief, the index reached 2270.