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Global stock market indexes were higher on Wednesday morning, despite economic data that continue to point to a tough year ahead - suggesting that investors are more concerned about momentum right now after a strong rebound by stock markets on Tuesday.

U.S. stock index futures were higher with about 30 minutes before markets open, suggesting that stocks will rise at the start of trading. Futures for the Dow Jones industrial average were up 21 points, and futures for the broader S&P 500 were up 7 points.

In Europe, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was up 1 per cent and Germany's DAX index was up 1.6 per cent in afternoon trading. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 was up 2.7 per cent in overnight trading.

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The ADP private payrolls report showed that companies shed 522,000 jobs in January, slightly better than the 693,000 jobs lost in December and a touch better than expectations, but few observers are interpreting this as a noticeable improvement when the direction of job loss is still down - steeply.

"There can be few doubts that the disaster in the labour market continues, with firms of all sizes and in all sectors cutting jobs," said Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics, in a note. "Manufacturing is being hit hardest, with the pace of job losses trebling since September, but nowhere is safe."

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