The UK market is modestly up in afternoon trading Friday, after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's comments lifted stocks in the previous session. Mixed corporate reports from across the region weighed on sentiment, ahead of the release of the U.S. GDP data.
Draghi on Thursday said the bank is prepared to take whatever measures needed to preserve the euro. "Within our mandate, the ECB is ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro," he told an investment conference in London. "And believe me, it will be enough," he stated.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is adding 0.97 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is gaining 0.66 percent.
Despite opening higher, the FTSE 100 index is currently adding 0.16 percent.
Anglo American is declining over 4 percent after announcing a plunge in first-half profit.
Pearson is falling 3.8 percent after profit declined in the first half of the year.
Barclays is climbing 5.6 percent. The company reported higher profit for the second quarter.
ITV is climbing 3.2 percent. Weir Group is advancing 2.9 percent.
Elsewhere in Europe, the German DAX is adding 0.23 percent. The French CAC 40 is advancing 0.93 percent and Switzerland's SMI is gaining 0.75 percent.
In economic news, Germany's flash inflation data is due at 8.00 am ET, which may have some impact on the markets. Economists forecast EU harmonized inflation to ease to 1.9 percent in July from 2 percent in June. On a monthly basis, the harmonized index is seen rising 0.4 percent.
In the U.S., the Bureau of Economic Analysis is due to release its advance estimate of second quarter GDP at 8:30 am ET. Economists expect GDP growth of 1.2 percent for the quarter following a 1.9 percent increase in the previous quarter.
Across Asia/Pacific, markets reacted positively to the remarks made by Draghi. Australia's All Ordinaries and Japan's Nikkei 225 climbed 1.5 percent each and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 2 percent. China's Shanghai Composite Index added 0.1 percent.
In the U.S., futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks moved sharply higher during trading in response to comments made by Mario Draghi. The Dow jumped 1.7 percent, the Nasdaq surged up 1.4 percent and the S&P 500 soared 1.7 percent.
In the commodity space, crude for September delivery is adding $0.20 to $89.59 per barrel and August gold is rising $2.3 to $1617.4 a troy ounce.
by RTT Staff Writer
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