- French manufacturing slows down
- German unemployment rises second month
- Ukraine restarts military operations
FTSE 100: 0.53%
CAC 40: 0.67%
FTSE MIB: 0.85%
IBEX 35: 0.32%
Stoxx 600: 0.50%
Stocks were registering modest advances come midday following the release of 'in line' Chinese manufacturing data and ahead of the release of a raft of economic indicators due out Stateside in the afternoon.
That came despite the announcement late Monday from Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko of an end to the cease fire and restart of military operations to oust pro-Russian rebels in the east of the country, in effect ignoring pressures from Moscow.
Acting as a backdrop, over the last few days the European Union and the US have been busy preparing for the possibility of new economic sanctions against Moscow.
BNP bounces after vowing to maintain dividend
BNP Paribas was bouncing higher after vowing to maintain its dividend unchanged despite having to pay out $8.97bn in fines to the US Department of Justice.
Shares in Spanish lender CaixaBank SA advanced after the resignation of its Chief Executive Officer.
From a sector stand-point the worst performance was seen in the following industrial groups within the DJ Stoxx 600: Basic Resources (1.87%), Banks (1.38%) and Telecommunications (0.89%).
French manufacturing slowdown weighs
The 'final' Markit Eurozone manufacturing PMI printed 51.8 in June, 0.1 points lower than the 'flash' print and 0.4 points lower than in May. The survey compiler highlighted the slowdown seen in French manufacturing activity as the chief contributor to the wider euro area slowdown.
The Eurozone's unemployment rate was unchanged at 11.6% in May, according to Eurostat. The consensus estimate had been for it to remain unchanged at April's previously estimated level of 11.7%.
Economists at Capital Economics emphasised the fact that the improvement seen in the data was solely due to the revisions made to last month's figures, rather than any "significant improvement" in the labour market.
German unemployment increased by 9,000 to 2.916m, worsening for a second month, according to the country's statistics office. Nevertheless, the combined rise of 34,000 seen over the last two months was far from offsetting the reduction of 88,000 seen throughout the last five months, BNP Paribas noted.
Crude futures Flat
The euro/dollar was off by just a tad in early trading, down 0.01% to $1.3692.
Front month Brent crude futures were flat at the $112.36/barrel mark on the ICE.