European stocks are seen opening on a mixed note Wednesday after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s remarks to U.S. lawmakers contained no surprises.
Powell will have another opportunity to address several issues such as interest rates, job losses and stimulus during his second day of testimony in Congress later today.
Asian markets are moving lower as reflation fears persisted and Iran rejected direct negotiations with the U.S. on the nuclear deal as long as American sanctions remain in place.
Chinese and Hong Kong stocks led regional losses as U.S. President Joe Biden showed readiness to meddle the Canadian citizens’ evacuation from Beijing.
There is some positive news on the vaccine front, with two separate studies published in the U.K. revealing that vaccines against Covid-19 are effective in cutting disease transmission and hospitalizations from the first dose.
The dollar hovered near a three-year low against the British pound while oil prices fell after industry data showed U.S. crude inventories unexpectedly rose last week.
Revised quarterly national accounts from Germany and business sentiment figures from France are due later in the session, headlining a light day for the European economic news.
Across the Atlantic, Powell’s second day of testimony may attract some attention along with a report on new home sales in the month of January.
U.S. stocks pared earlier losses to end mixed overnight as investors cheered reassuring comments from Powell on inflation and interest rates.
Powell reiterated interest rates will remain at near-zero levels and the Fed will continue its asset purchases at the current rate until “substantial further progress” has been made toward its goals of maximum employment and price stability.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 edged up around 0.1 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite slipped half a percent.
European markets closed mostly lower on Tuesday after a choppy session on concerns over rising bond yields.
The pan European Stoxx 600 eased 0.4 percent. The German DAX dropped 0.6 percent, while France’s CAC 40 index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 both inched up 0.2 percent.