- Weak Chinese data fuels slowdown concerns
- Ukraine PM meets with White House
- ECB Monthly Report to be released
- US retail sales and jobless claims out
FTSE 100: -0.11%
CAC 40: -0.06%
FTSE MIB: 0.16%
IBEX 35: -0.20%
Stoxx 600: -0.04%
European stocks were little changed following the release of Chinese data which showed industrial output, investment and retail sales weakened in February.
Industrial output rose by 8.6% year-on-year last month, down from 9.7% in January, missing the forecast of 9.5%.
Fixed-asset investment climbed 17.9% in February, compared to 19.6% a month earlier and far short of analyst's expectations of 19.4%.
Retail sales gained 11.8% last month, slipping from the 13.1% increase in January. Economists had predicted a rise of 13.5%.
The reports add to poor data at the beginning of the week, fuelling concerns about a slowdown in the world's second largest economy.
"China's policymakers are unlikely to intervene just yet - comfortable with faltering growth as to them, it's a symptomatic of an evolving economy but it doesn't spell good news for China's neighbours in Asia who are all exposed heavily to the country's growth prospects," said Ishaq Siddiqi, Market Strategist at ETX Capital.
Meanwhile, the situation in Ukraine continued to escalate. Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk will meet with US leaders today in a last ditch effort to prevent Russian annexation of Crimea.
The US administration stepped up its criticism of Crimea's plans this weekend for a referendum on whether to leave the Ukraine and join Russia, saying it was not legal and would not be recognised by the international community.
"Given the lack of adequate preparation and the intimidating presence of Russian troops, it would also be a deeply flawed process which would have no moral force," the US said in a joint statement with the Group of Seven leaders today.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of stealing Crimea and said his actions are against "European values".
In a speech to members of her parliamentary party, she said a "certain amount of toughness" was needed in Europe's dealings with Russia, according to Der Spiegel magazine.
Turning back to today, the agenda will include the release of the European Central Bank's Monthly Report, US retail sales and US initial jobless claims.
Morrison, Deutsche Lufthansa
Morrison Supermarkets declined after the UK grocer reported a drop in annual profits and said it would sell £1bn in property over the next three years.
Deutsche Lufthansa gained as Europe's second-largest airline said it will pay a dividend of €0.45 a share.
Adecco dropped after its largest investor said it will sell about 16% in the provider of temporary workers.
The euro rose 0.35% to $1.3952.
Brent crude fell $0.065 to $107.950 per barrel, according to the ICE.