European Shares May Drift Lower As Investors Await Central Bank Decisions

European stocks are likely to open on a subdued note Monday as investors look ahead to the interest rate decisions from the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the Bank of England this week for directional cues.

The FOMC decision is due on Feb.1, with analysts expecting the U.S. central bank to slow the pace of interest rate hikes to 25 basis points.

Traders will pay close attention to the accompanying statement to see if there are chances of a soft landing for the economy.

The monthly U.S. jobs and wage data along with reports on consumer confidence and manufacturing and service sector activity would also be in the spotlight.

Elsewhere, the European Central Bank and the Bank of England are both expected to hike rates by 50 basis points.

On the earnings front, Alphabet, Apple, Amazon and Facebook parent company Meta are among the prominent companies scheduled to report their fourth-quarter financial results this week.

Asian markets traded mostly lower even as Chinese shares rose as traders returned from the Lunar New Year holidays.

The dollar traded firm and gold held steady while oil edged lower ahead of an OPEC+ meeting this week, with no changes expected to oil output policy.

U.S. stocks fluctuated before closing mostly higher on Friday, as a slew of economic data boosted optimism about the overall health of the world’s largest economy.

Personal income increased in line with estimates in December, pending home sales rose for the first time in seven months and a measure of consumer sentiment improved in January while a closely watched measure of inflation showed the pace of price increases easing.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rallied 1 percent to log its fourth weekly gain, while the S&P 500 rose 0.3 percent and the Dow inched up marginally.

European stocks closed on a positive note Friday after U.S. GDP data beat expectations.

The pan European STOXX 600 gained 0.3 percent. The German DAX edged up around 0.1 percent while France’s CAC 40 and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 both finished marginally higher.

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