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European Shares Seen Up As Markets Shrug Off Syria Strikes

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European stocks are likely to open a tad higher on Monday as investors veered around to the view that weekend missile strikes against Syria by the United States, France and Britain may be a one-off event.

U.S President Donald Trump tweeted "Mission Accomplished" on Saturday, implying that there will not be another strike soon.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Sunday that further Western attacks on Syria would result in world chaos, as Washington prepared to impose new sanctions against Russia to punish it for enabling the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons in its civil war.

Asian stock markets are trading mixed, with Chinese and Hong Kong markets falling heavily after the Hong Kong dollar last week briefly touched the bottom of its permitted trading band against the U.S. dollar, leading Hong Kong's monetary authority to try to prop up the Hong Kong dollar.

Traders also awaited cues from Chinese GDP data, Japanese inflation figures and a host of speeches by Federal Reserve officials this week for direction.

Earnings news may drive trading in the U.S. this week, with Bank of America,
Goldman Sachs, Johnson & Johnson, American Express and General Electric among the companies due to report their quarterly results.

On the macroeconomic front, U.S. data on retail sales, housing starts and industrial production as well as the Fed's Beige Book report may shed additional light on the outlook for interest rates.

Property tracking website Rightmove said earlier today that the average asking price of a house in the United Kingdom rose 0.4 percent month-on-month in April following the 1.5 percent spike in March.

U.S. stocks finished lower on Friday as fears of a trade far, concerns about higher interest rates and downbeat consumer sentiment data overshadowed encouraging earnings reports from financial giants JPMorgan, Citigroup and Wells Fargo.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index slid around half a percent, while the S&P 500 dropped 0.3 percent.

European markets pared early gains to end slightly higher on Friday as investors kept a wary eye on developments in Syria and the trade spat between the U.S. and China.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index gained 0.1 percent. The German DAX rose 0.2 percent while France's CAC 40 index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 both inched up around 0.1 percent.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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