* Payrolls data well above expectations
* Santarus jumps on buyout deal
* Disney falls after earnings
* Futures: Dow off 39 pts, S&P off 3.5 pts, Nasdaq up 2.25pts
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, Nov 8 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set for a loweropen on Friday, after an unexpectedly strong payrolls reportincreased the possibility the Federal Reserve could begin toscale back its stimulus before the end of the year.
Employers added 204,000 new jobs to their payrolls lastmonth, the Labor Department said on Friday. The unemploymentrate, however, rose to 7.3 percent from September's nearlyfive-year low of 7.2 percent. Expectations called for payrollsrising 125,000 in October and the unemployment rate ticking up atenth of a percentage point to 7.3 percent.
The stronger than expected data, coupled with Thursday'sbetter-than-expected gross domestic product data, raisedexpectations the Federal Reserve will begin to trim itsbond-buying program of $85 billion a month earlier thananticipated.
"This is a shockingly impressive number. Immediately this isa case of the stock market taking good news as bad news," saidCameron Hinds, Regional CIO for Wells Fargo Private Bank inOmaha, Nebraska.
"We will see what happens behind the doors at the Fed, butcertainly there will be some reassessment of at least thepossibility of a December and/or January tapering."
The benchmark S&P index is up 22.5 percent for the year,with gains largely driven by the Fed's stimulus.
Other economic data showed consumer spending rose 0.2percent after advancing 0.3 percent in August, in line withexpectations.
Later in the session at 9:55 a.m. (1455 GMT), investors willeye the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminaryNovember consumer sentiment index. Expectations call for areading of 74.5 compared with 73.2 in the final October report.
S&P 500 futures fell 3.5 points and were below fairvalue, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into accountinterest rates, dividends and time to expiration on thecontract. Dow Jones industrial average futures lost 39points and Nasdaq 100 futures added 2.25 points.
Santarus Inc surged 38.2 percent to $32.08 inpremarket trade after Salix Pharmaceuticals Ltd agreedto buy the drugmaker for about $2.6 billion.
Walt Disney Co declined 1.3 percent to $66.30 beforethe opening bell after posting quarterly results.
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