European Stock Futures Advance Before U.S. Employment Report

European stock-index futures gained as investors awaited the U.S. government’s monthly payrolls report for indications on the strength of the world’s largest economy. Asian shares and U.S. futures fluctuated.

Allied Irish Banks Plc (ALBK) and Bank of Ireland Plc may be active after regulators instructed four of the nation’s lenders to raise 24 billion euros ($34 billion) of additional capital. Logitech International SA (LOGN) might move after cutting its forecast. Deutsche Lufthansa AG (LHA) may gain as Citigroup Inc. named the company as its top airlines pick.

Futures on the Euro Stoxx 50 Index expiring in June rose 0.2 percent to 2,850 at 7:24 a.m. in London, while FTSE 100 Index futures were little changed. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures gained less than 0.1 percent today and the MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped 0.1 percent.

“Today’s non-farm payrolls report will be the big focus in the coming hours,” Ben Potter, market strategist at IG Markets in Melbourne, wrote in an e-mail.

The benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 Index slid 1 percent yesterday, halting a six-day winning streak. U.S. stocks fell, trimming the biggest first-quarter rally for the S&P 500 since 1998, as Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Narayana Kocherlakota said interest rates may need to rise.

Payrolls Report

The U.S. Labor Department’s report at 8:30 a.m. in Washington may show payrolls increased by 190,000 last month after a 192,000 advance in February that was the biggest in nine months, according to the median forecast of 83 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.

Manufacturing in the U.S. may have expanded at about the same pace as in February, the strongest month in almost seven years, a report from the Tempe, Arizona-based Institute for Supply Management due at 10 a.m. New York time may show.

In China, manufacturing growth accelerated for the first time in four months, easing concern that monetary tightening may lead to a slowdown in the world’s second-biggest economy. The Purchasing Managers’ Index from the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing rose to 53.4 in March from 52.2 in February. A separate PMI by HSBC Holdings Plc also gained.

Portugal will elect its next government on June 5, just 10 days before its last bond redemption of the year, as surging financing costs threaten to push the country to the brink of requiring a bailout. Portugal announced an “extraordinary” auction of one-year notes for today, saying it has “specific demand” for the securities.

Irish Banks

Allied Irish, the largest bank during the nation’s decade- long economic boom, may move after the central bank in Dublin said late yesterday it requires 13.3 billion euros of additional capital after a stress test. Bank of Ireland must get 5.2 billion euros, while Irish Life & Permanent Plc needs 4 billion euros and EBS Building Society should raise 1.5 billion euros.

Logitech may move after the maker of computer mice trimmed its forecasts for the fiscal year. The company now expects sales in the range of $2.35 billion to $2.37 billion, compared with a previous forecast of $2.4 billion to $2.42 billion, and operating income of $140 million to $150 million, down from an earlier estimate of $170 million to $180 million.

Lufthansa may rise after Citigroup named the Cologne, Germany-based carrier its top airlines pick. Lufthansa has the strongest balance sheet of the flag carriers and is least affected by rising oil prices, the analysts wrote.

Nokia shares may fall as Nomura Holdings Inc. downgraded the mobile-phone maker to “reduce” from “neutral.”

France Telecom SA (FTE) may drop as UBS AG (UBSN) cut the stock to “sell” from “neutral.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Giles Broom in Zurich at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Rummer at

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