How the US job market is changing
2 December 2011 Last updated at 09:10 GMT
The focus of global markets will be on the US this Friday, where there could be more cause for cautious optimism about the world's biggest economy.
Official monthly employment figures could show US companies stepping up hiring in November, with estimates of around 120,000 new jobs.
That would add to expectations of stronger economic growth in the US in the final three months of the year, after some healthy manufacturing figures on Thursday.
However, America's battered jobs market has got a long way to go.
Caroline Hepker reports.