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European stock futures lower; Credit Suisse delays annual report

Published 09/03/2023, 07:22
© Reuters.

By Peter Nurse 

Investing.com - European stock markets are expected to open lower Thursday, as investors digest weak Chinese inflation data, more comments from Fed chair Jerome Powell as well as fresh concerns over the health of Credit Suisse .

At 02:00 ET (07:00 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 0.3% lower, CAC 40 futures in France dropped 0.2% and the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. fell 0.2%.

Chinese inflation data released earlier in the session pointed to a sluggish economic recovery in the country, the second largest economy in the world and a major export market for European companies.

Also weighing on sentiment in Europe were the comments from U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on the second day of his testimony to Congress on Wednesday. 

Powell affirmed his earlier message that interest rates would have to go higher and possibly in larger chunks to tame inflation, although he was at pains to point out that any moves, including March’s likely hike, would be data-dependent.

This brings Friday’s official jobs report firmly into focus, especially after last month’s blockbuster report, and U.S. jobless claims data later on Thursday will act as a tasty starter.

Back in Europe, the economic data slate is largely empty, and focus is likely to be on Credit Suisse (SIX:CSGN).

The embattled Swiss lender announced earlier Thursday that it will delay the publication of its 2022 annual report after a conversation with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission late Wednesday.

Credit Suisse said in a statement that the intervention was related to the “technical assessment of previously disclosed revisions to the consolidated cash flow statements in the years ended December 31, 2020, and 2019, as well as related controls.”  

Oil prices traded largely unchanged Thursday, nursing recent losses as disappointing Chinese economic data and the potential for further U.S. interest rate hikes raised doubts over crude demand growth this year.

Chinese factory gate prices shrank more than expected in February, data showed Friday, suggesting manufacturing activity in the largest crude importer in the world was running well below full capacity.

Official data from the Energy Information Administration, released Wednesday, showed that U.S. crude inventories fell 1.7 million barrels last week, shrinking for the first time in 10 weeks. 

By 02:00 ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.1% higher at $76.70 a barrel, while the Brent contract rose 0.1% to $82.70. Both benchmarks were down almost 4% so far this week.

Additionally, gold futures fell 0.1% to $1,817.15/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.1% higher at 1.0553.

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