Fast Europe Open: ECB minutes, France unemployment

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It’s been a mixed Thursday session for equities in Asia, and that looks set to continue as investors brace for details out today from the European Central Bank’s January meeting.

Equities markets were mixed in Asia with a stronger yen seeing the Topix index down 0.2 per cent, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed up 0.1 per cent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index is up 0.5 per cent with Shanghai’s Composite index gaining 0.2 per cent.

Futures tip London’s FTSE 100 index to open up 0.1 per cent, while in New York the S&P 500 index is expected to open down 0.1 per cent.

The dollar has retreated from highs reached earlier in the week, with the dollar index measuring the greenback against a basket of peers currently down 0.3 per cent in afternoon Asia trading.

The ECB is set release the minutes of its January meeting early this afternoon, throwing the spotlight back on to the euro. The single currency is currently up 0.2 per cent against the dollar at $1.0617.

Today’s corporate calendar includes earnings results from Nestle, Drax and Air France-KLM, while the economic calendar is as follows (London times):

  • 06.30: France unemployment
  • 07.00: EU new car registrations
  • 08.30: Sweden unemployment
  • 12.30: ECB minutes
  • 14.00: Speech by ECB board member Benoit Coeure
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