UK stocks are set to start today's session on a downbeat note, with City sources predicting the FTSE 100 will open around 17 points lower than yesterday's close of 6,875.00.
The decline is expected despite a decent performance in Asia overnight and new record highs reached in the States at last night's close.
Alpari UK's Joshua Mahony said: "The inability of European markets to rise this morning points to a possible pullback of sorts following Thursday's European Central Bank (ECB) driven upside.
"[ ...] A pretty quiet day ahead in the markets, where the UK manufacturing production figure represents the only major event of note in the European session. As such, we have seen moves to counterbalance the markets following last week's major shocks in the form of the ECB's decision to implement a plethora of policy changes, along with the US jobs report impact.
"On the whole these two events taken in totality amount to a boost for the stock markets, alongside a mixed euro reaction. Given that Mario Draghi was clearly targeting a weakening of the euro, it is safe to say that the markets have somewhat disappointed given the extent to which Draghi went to ensure he saw a strong reaction."
Overnight, China released a bigger than anticipated climb in consumer prices to 2.5% year-on-year, although this was still notably below the government's target of 3.5%.
According to Mahony, the figure should allay concerns of a disinflationary environment, whilst also staying low enough to pave the way for future stimulus measures.
Here in the UK, today's focus will also be on data releases for UK industrial and manufacturing production, which are both expected to show a pick-up.
Industrial output may have risen by 2.8% year-on-year in April following a 2.3% increase a month earlier, according to the consensus estimate.
Manufacturing production is forecast to jump 4% year-on-year in April after a 3.3% gain in March.
In this morning's company news, engineering firm Rolls-Royce revealed it has won a contract worth £50m to supply deck machinery for four large anchor handlers offshore Brazil. The vessels, to be delivered for Edison Chouest Offshore, have been developed to operate in Brazilian waters under an eight-year contract with Petrobas.
Technology group Oxford Instruments hailed a strong set of full-year results, with orders, sales and profits all ahead of the prior year. Orders grew by 2.5% to £342.2m for the year to March 31st, revenue grew by 2.7% to £360.1m while adjusted pre-tax profit firmed a touch to £47.1m.
Imperial Tobacco will float logistics business Logista on the Spanish stock exchange, but retain the majority of shares
in the subsidiary. FTSE 100 cigarette maker Imperial's indirectly wholly-owned subsidiary Altadis will launch a secondary offering, where the intention is not raise any funds for Logista.