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European Shares Set To Open On Cautious Note

stockmarkets aug20 13aug20 lt

European stocks look set to open flat to slightly lower on Thursday, with news on vaccine development and U.S. stimulus talks likely to be in focus.

Asian markets remain mostly higher as regional governments announce stricter measures to combat a resurgence of the coronavirus.

The dollar weakened after Fed officials warned that the U.S. recovery will be gradual and slow until the pandemic is contained.

Gold held steady on dollar weakness while oil prices slipped after rallying overnight on U.S. government data showing a fall in inventories.

Final consumer prices from Germany and unemployment data from France are due later in the session, headlining a light day for the European economic news.

Across the Atlantic, trading may be driven by reaction to the Labor Department's weekly jobless claims report, which is expected to show a relatively modest drop in jobless claims.

U.S. stocks rallied overnight as investors cheered signs of slowing coronavirus infections and remained optimistic about a stimulus package from Congress.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.1 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite soared 2.1 percent and the S&P 500 surged 1.4 percent.

European markets rose on Wednesday after data showed factory output in the euro zone grew for the second straight month in June. The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index advanced 1.1 percent.

The German DAX and France's CAC 40 index both gained about 0.9 percent while the U.K.'s FTSE 100 spiked as much as 2 percent despite news of the U.K. economy going into recession.

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