European Shares Seen Tad Lower As Investors Await US Earnings
European stocks may open on a weak note Friday after official data showed China’s exports and imports both declined at the end of the year.
Exports posted an annual fall of 9.9 percent in December, almost in line with economists’ forecast of -10.0 percent. At the same time, imports decreased 7.5 percent from the last year, compared to the expected fall of 9.8 percent.
Investors also await cues from the U.S. earnings season, with financial giants Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo among the companies due to report their quarterly results before the U.S. opening bell.
Asian markets traded mostly higher, though Japan’s Nikkei fell over 1 percent reflecting a climbing yen and rising bond yields on speculation that the Bank of Japan might relent and tighten its ultra-loose monetary policy.
The dollar wobbled in the wake of mixed comments from Fed officials. While St. Louis Fed president James Bullard favored lifting rates above 5 percent as soon as possible, Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker supported smaller 25-basis-point rate hikes going forward.
More regional Fed bank presidents will be speaking over the course of the day.
Gold traded flat and was set for a weekly gain while oil slipped after six consecutive sessions of gains.
U.S. stocks closed higher overnight and Treasury yields ticked down, as fresh data showed consumer price inflation increased at a slower rate in December, matching expectations from economists.
U.S. consumer inflation edged down by 0.1 percent in December after inching up by 0.1 percent in November.
The annual rate of consumer price growth slowed to 6.5 percent from 7.1 percent in November, marking the smallest increase since October 2021.
The Dow rose 0.6 percent to reach its best closing level in over a month and the S&P 500 edged up 0.3 percent to extend gains for a third day while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 0.6 percent to extend gains for a fifth consecutive day.
European stocks closed at their highest level since April 2022 on Thursday in choppy trading. The pan-European STOXX 600 advanced 0.6 percent.
The German DAX and France’s CAC 40 both surged around 0.7 percent, while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 rallied 0.9 percent.
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