- Fed to end QE in October
- French industrial output drops
- BoE to announce latest policy
FTSE 100: 0.08%
CAC 40: -0.11%
FTSE MIB: -0.33%
IBEX 35: -0.31%
Stoxx 600: -0.05%
European stocks were mostly lower after the Federal Reserve's meeting minutes yesterday showed policymakers expressed concerns about low volatility in equity, currency and fixed-income markets.
The Fed released the notes from its June 17-18th meeting, when the central bank's Federal Open Market Committee cut monthly bond purchases by $10bn to $35bn. At the time Fed Chair Janet Yellen had said interest rates will probably stay low for a considerable time.
The minutes showed the Fed is set to end its bond buying programme in October and expects the first interest rate hike around the middle of the year.
"Interestingly the minutes mentioned that the members were concerned that the recent low volatility in financial markets showed that investors were not factoring in a more hawkish approach from central banks," Alpari UK analyst James Hughes pointed out.
"This clearly shows that the Fed are also worried about the weak foundations the equity market rally is based on and that the gains could unravel at lightning speed if something was to catch them of guard. It seems there is an overall complacency from traders and investors at the moment and that no one will take heed of the warnings until markets finally do show this is a serious matter by posting huge declines."
Turning to today's agenda in the US, a report is predicted by analysts to show 315,000 Americans filed for unemployment benefits in the week ended July 5th, matching figures from the previous week.
French industrial production, BoE policy
French industrial output for May dropped 1.7%, compared to a forecast for a 0.2% increase. The report follows data earlier in the week that showed German exports declined more than expected in May, as well as an unexpected drop in German industrial output.
In the UK today, the Bank of England will announce its latest verdict on monetary policy. The central bank is not expected to launch any new policy moves, holding the benchmark interest rate at 0.50% and asset purchases at £375bn. The first interest rate hike is forecast for 2015.
Fugro declined after the deepwater-oilfield surveyor said it expects a write-off of €300m to €350m, most of it in its Geoscience division.
DNB retreated after Norway's largest bank reported second-quarter net income that fell short of analysts' estimates.
Skanska slumped after saying it will scale down operations in Latin America after booking 500m kronor in project writedowns and restructuring costs.
Gerresheimer advanced after the maker of syringes and inhalers posted second-quarter earnings that beat forecasts.
Airbus rallied following reports India's Indigo airline may place an order for A320 neo jets in a deal valued at about $20.6bn.
The euro fell 0.05% to $1.3635.
Brent crude futures dipped 0.417% to $107.83 per barrel, according to the ICE.