- Chinese factory PMI contracts
- French manufacturing rises
- Eurozone PMI and confidence figures out
- Slate of US data to be released
FTSE 100: 0.10%
CAC 40: 0.21%
FTSE MIB: 0.43%
IBEX 35: 0.46%
Stoxx 600: 0.06%
European stocks were mixed as investors weighed manufacturing data in France and China.
French manufacturing activity rose more than forecast in January. The purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the sector climbed to 48.8 from 47 in December, surprising analysts who had pencilled in a reading of 47.5. However, the figure remained under the 50 level that signals expansion.
In China, manufacturing unexpectedly contracted with the preliminary reading of HSBC's PMI for January falling for the first time since July to 49.5 from 50.5 a month earlier. Economists had estimated a reading of 50.5.
The report is likely to fuel fears of a deteriorating growth in the world's second largest economy as the government tries to curb high debt.
"Today's Markit/HSBC manufacturing PMIs suggest that the Chinese economy has again started to lose momentum," according to Danske Bank.
"In our view, the slowdown is largely a response to the de facto monetary tightening the People's Bank of China (PBoC) has been doing since mid-2013 and is largely driven by weaker investment demand.
"The decline is overall consistent with our view that China's growth was poised to slow in the first half of 2014 on the back of tighter monetary conditions but the larger-than-expected decline in January nonetheless suggests increasing downside risk."
Manufacturing PMIs for Germany and the Eurozone will also be released this morning. In the afternoon consumer confidence figures the Eurozone will be unveiled.
US data released as Fed meeting looms
Following a slow start to the week, the US will see a barrage of economic data later today including weekly jobless claims, PMIs and housing.
Markit's PMI preliminary reading for January is expected to rise to 55 from 54.4 in December.
Analysts predict another report on existing home sales will show a rise of 0.5% in December, compared to a fall of 4.3% a month earlier.
The reports come a week ahead of the Federal Reserve's next policy meeting.
Policymakers are closely watching economic data to gauge the health of the US economy in determining whether to announce a second round of monetary stimulus tapering.
The central bank last month started winding back monthly asset purchases by $10bn to $75bn.
Asos declined after Goldman Sachs cut its rating of the online fashion retailer to 'neutral' from 'buy'.
slumped after the European carrier reported a lacklustre first quarter, hit by winter storms and power outages at Gatwick airport.
Royal Bank of Scotland gained after the author of a report into the state-backed firm's lending to small businesses said he found no evidence into claims of putting struggling companies into default to boost profits.
Logitech advanced after the maker of computer accessories swung to a third quarter profit that beat analysts' estimates and raised its full-year guidance.
The euro rose 0.58% to $1.3626.
Brent crude futures fell $0.259 to $107.990 per barrel, according to the ICE.