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European Shares Seen Opening Up In Cautious Trade

stockmarkets dec24 26nov20 lt

European stocks are seen opening flat to slightly higher on Thursday, with trading activity likely to remain amid the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. U.S. bonds and stocks will trade on a partial schedule on Friday.

With the coronavirus infection rate slowing down in Europe, investors are eyeing a relaxation of restrictions in the region.

There was a "downward trend" in the number of cases in Europe in the past week, but the region still has the biggest proportion of new cases and deaths globally, the World Health Organization said in its latest epidemiological update.

The global tally of coronavirus cases stands at 60,681,568, with the U.S. reporting the most cases and deaths.

Asian markets are trading mixed after minutes from the Federal Reserve's meeting earlier this month showed FOMC participants viewed the nationwide surge of Covid-19 cases as "a downside risk to the recovery."

Gold edged higher, helped by broad weakness in the U.S. dollar while oil extended gains for a fifth day after a surprise drop in crude inventories.

Consumer confidence data from Germany and minutes of the monetary policy meeting of the European Central Bank are due later in the session, headlining a busy day for the European economic news.

Earlier today, the Bank of Korea retained its interest rate at a record low and lifted its growth outlook, saying imports will improve gradually with global recovery.

U.S. stocks ended mixed overnight as investors weighed disappointing economic data and rising Covid-19 cases against vaccine hopes.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose half a percent to reach a fresh record closing high, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.6 percent and the S&P 500 eased 0.2 percent.

European stocks ended mostly lower on Wednesday as the euphoria over successful vaccine trails and U.S. President-elect Joe Biden's transition to White House faded a bit.

The pan European Stoxx 600 closed flat with a negative bias. The German DAX finished marginally lower and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 shed 0.6 percent while France's CAC 40 index inched up 0.2 percent.

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