U.S. employment data casts further shadow on the market

The U.S. non-farm payrolls employment dropped by 20,000 in January, compared with an expected increase of 15,000. But the unemployment rate unexpectedly moved lower to 9.7%, compared with expectations of 10%. The Dow industrials was recently down 31 pts to 9972 after the news which highlights the fragility of the U.S. labour market and potential weakness of the economic recovery.
 On significant weakness in oil stocks, position increased in Nighthawk Energy at 27p, which fell 7% on the day. Overall the portfolio has suffered steep falls this week, particularly in speculative stocks.