FTSE 100 Live: Focus on US non-farm payrolls as Federal Reserve readies taper plan, oil prices rise

By Graeme Evans

Employment figures in the United States have the potential to move markets later today as speculation continues about when Federal Reserve policymakers might begin to scale back economic support.

This afternoon's monthly non-farm payrolls release is expected to show the country's unemployment rate is at a post-pandemic low, triggering a taper move by the Fed next month. A disappointing figure, however, has the potential to fuel stagflation worries.

It's been a wild week for energy prices, with a barrel of Brent crude today trading at a fresh three-year high above $83 and natural gas futures still at an elevated level of about 250p a therm.

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