The European markets are poised for a slightly higher open on Monday, after data showed on Friday an unexpected increase in U.S. consumer confidence.
The DAX futures are adding 9.50 points, the CAC 40 futures are gaining 2 points and the FTSE 100 futures are advancing 3.50 points. The Swiss Market Index futures are rising 4 points. The Euro Stoxx 50 futures are up 5 points.
The European markets closed higher on Friday, boosted partly by German Chancellor Angela Merkel's comments on Thursday that Germany is committed to do everything it can to maintain the euro. Merkel's comments helped keep alive hopes that the European Central Bank would take some decisive steps to reduce surging borrowing costs.
The DAX rose 0.6 percent and the CAC 40 rose 0.2 percent. The FTSE 100 index and the Swiss Market index rose 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks gained 0.6 percent and the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, rose 0.3 percent.
The European Central Bank is considering setting limits on yields of Eurozone sovereign bonds, Germany's Spiegel magazine reported Sunday without mentioning its sources. The central bank would intervene and buy the bonds if their interest rates exceed a pre-determined threshold above German bonds, the magazine said.
Meanwhile, house prices in the United Kingdom fell at the fastest pace ever seen for the month of August as the number of properties coming to the market continued to outstrip demand, property website Rightmove said.
Asking prices for a property in the U.K. declined 2.4 percent month-on-month in August to 236,260 pounds. This was the largest August fall Rightmove has ever recorded and followed a 1.7 percent drop in July.
On the corporate front, Volkswagen's labor chief Bernd Osterloh has rejected further acquisitions by the German car maker in the near future, business daily Handelsblatt reported.
Bovis Homes Group reported a surge in first-half pre-tax profit to 16.2 million pounds, from 8.12 million pounds last year. Revenue increased to 170.3 million pounds from 133.6 million pounds in the 2011 period.
Amlin Plc posted first-half profit attributable to equity holders of the parent company of 168.9 million pounds or 33.7 pence per share compared to a loss of 151.7 million pounds or 30.7 pence per share last year. Net earned premium grew to 990.3 million pounds from 919.3 million pounds.
In Asia/Pacific, most major markets are in negative territory. China's Shanghai Composite Index retreated 1.1 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.7 percent, while Australia's All Ordinaries edged down 0.14 percent. However, Japan's Nikkei 225 is up modestly.
The U.S. futures are nearly changed with a positive bias. In the previous session, the Dow gained 0.2 percent, the Nasdaq rose 0.5 percent and the S&P 500 gained 0.2 percent, as better-than-expected economic news solidified market sentiment. A closely watched survey showed earlier in the day that consumer attitudes have improved in August, rising to their highest level in three months.
Among commodities, crude for September delivery is adding $0.39 to $96.40 per barrel while December gold is gaining $1.6 to $1621.0 a troy ounce.
by RTT Staff Writer
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