* U.S. job growth beats expectations in April
* ISM non-manufacturing data and factory orders on tap
* S&P 500 index likely to break above 1,600 mark
* Futures up: S&P 11.6 pts, Dow 117 pts, Nasdaq 22 pts
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, May 3 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set for a higher
open on Friday after data showed U.S. employment rose more than
expected in April, pushing the unemployment rate to a four-year
low of 7.5 percent, which could ease concerns of a slowdown in
The data showed non-farm payrolls rose 165,000 in April,
while March's payrolls were raised to 138,000 and February's
were revised up to 332,000. Investors welcomed the gains after
weeks of disappointing data that suggested the economic recovery
was losing steam.
The strong data is likely to push the S&P 500 index above
the 1,600 mark.
"The April numbers were clearly better than expectations,
and the fairly large dip we saw in March was largely erased,"
said Cam Albright, director of asset allocation at Wilmington
Trust Investment Advisors in Wilmington, Delaware.
"This will probably give the (equity) market at least a
near-term boost, particularly given the revisions that we saw."
Data on Thursday showed a narrowing of the U.S. trade gap in
March, although drops in imports and exports were viewed as
warning signs about the strength of domestic and foreign demand.
In other macroeconomic news, the Institute for Supply
Management's non-manufacturing sector data will be released
along with the Commerce Department's factory orders report for
March at 10 a.m. (1400 GMT).
S&P 500 futures added 11.6 points and were above fair
value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account
interest rates, dividends and time to expiration of the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures gained 117
points while Nasdaq 100 futures added 22 points.
On Thursday, Wall Street rallied after data showing U.S.
weekly jobless claims dropped to a five-year low. Also helping
was the European Central Bank with a cut to its benchmark
The move follows Wednesday's Federal Reserve statement in
which the U.S. central bank said it would continue its bond
buying scheme to keep interest rates low and spur growth, and
would step up purchases if needed.
Mining stocks were the top gainers in premarket trade
including Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc, up 3
percent after prices of copper posted their biggest daily gain
in almost 1-1/2 years.
LinkedIn Corp shares were likely to come under
pressure after the social network late Thursday reported
disappointing revenue forecasts, suggesting that a revamped
mobile app and other new products designed to keep smartphone
users engaged will not deliver on advertising growth as quickly
as anticipated. The stock was off about 9 percent in premarket
The S&P ended at a record level on Thursday after hitting a
record high intraday level of 1,598.58. About 74 percent of
stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange closed higher while
73 percent of Nasdaq-listed shares closed up.