European Factors to Watch-Shares seen higher on Fed, data
LONDON, Jan 8 (Reuters) - European shares were expected to open sharply higher on Thursday, tracking gains in the United States and Asia, with strong U.S. private sector jobs data and a recovery in oil prices seen supporting the market. The market is also likely to get some boost from the minutes of the Fed's December meeting released late on Wednesday. The central bank pressed ahead with its plans to begin raising interest rates later this year, but Fed officials said they could be "patient" in deciding when to begin the process. Futures for the Euro STOXX 50 equity index, Germany's DAX and France's CAC were up between 1.3 percent and 1.8 percent at 0752 GMT. The S&P 500 rose 1.2 percent on Wednesday, its biggest daily percentage gain since Dec. 18, retracing some of its 4.2 percent loss over the previous five sessions tied to concerns about plunging oil prices and global economic weakness. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 share index closed 0.5 percent higher in the previous session, while Japanese stocks posted their biggest rise in three weeks on Thursday. Britain's biggest grocer Tesco will be in focus as it plans to sell assets and cut hundreds of millions of pounds of costs to fund lower prices in store as part of its plan to fight back from the biggest crisis in its 95-year-history. Standard Chartered will also be eyed as the Asia-focused bank is closing the bulk of its global equities business and axing 4,000 retail banking jobs to aggressively cut costs to reverse its fortunes, according to a memo seen by Reuters. Energy shares will be in the spotlight after Brent crude oil prices extended gains on Thursday to hold above $51 a barrel after an unexpected fall in U.S. crude stocks snapped a 4-session decline the previous day. Europe bourses in 2014: (link.reuters.com/pad95v) Asset performance in 2014: (link.reuters.com/rav46v) MARKET SNAPSHOT at 0718 GMT: LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 2,025.90 1.16 % 23.29 NIKKEI 17167.1 1.67 % 281.77 MSCI ASIA EX-JP 464.81 1.26 % 5.77 EUR/USD 1.1806 -0.26 % -0.0031 USD/JPY 119.92 0.56 % 0.6700 10-YR US TSY YLD 1.982 -- 0.03 10-YR BUND YLD 0.481 -- 0.01 SPOT GOLD $1,207.50 -0.21 % -$2.55 US CRUDE $48.71 0.12 % 0.06 > ASIA STOCKS CLIMB AFTER UPBEAT U.S. JOBS, EURO NEAR 9-YR LOW > WALL ST UP MORE THAN 1 PCT, BOOSTED BY JOBS DATA, FED > NIKKEI POSTS BIGGEST RISE IN 3 WEEKS ON SOLID U.S. DATA, REBOUND IN OIL > PRICES ALMOST FLAT ON ANXIETY ABOUT GLOBAL GROWTH > EURO GETS DEFLATION JITTERS, DOLLAR CLIMBS > OIL HALTS 4-DAY DROP, U.S. STOCKPILE DATA SUPPORTS COMPANY NEWS: TESCO Britain's biggest grocer Tesco plans to sell assets and cut hundreds of millions of pounds of costs to fund lower prices in store as part of its plan to fight back from the biggest crisis in its 95-year-history. MARKS & SPENCER Marks & Spencer posted a worse than expected 5.8 percent drop in underlying sales of clothing, gifts and homeware in its Christmas quarter, exacerbated by online delivery problems. STANDARD CHARTERED Standard Chartered is closing the bulk of its global equities business and axing 4,000 retail banking jobs as Peter Sands moves to aggressively cut costs to reverse the Asia-focused bank's fortunes, according to a memo seen by Reuters. AIR FRANCE-KLM Air France-KLM achieved a 1.3 percent year-on-year rise in passenger traffic last month, driven by growth on routes to and from Americas and Asia, data showed on Thursday. NOVARTIS A panel to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration unanimously backed the approval of Novartis AG's copy of Amgen Inc's blockbuster cancer drug Neupogen, setting the stage for the regulator's first approval of a biosimilar. Novartis also said it will submit regulatory applications in the United States for two treatments against chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) after late-stage clinical studies yielded good results. CGG Seismic oil and gas services group CGG said it completed its 2014 debt refinancing program. Due to the strong and seasonal level of cash generated during the fourth quarter, net debt at the end of 2014 is expected to be significantly reduced to around $2.425 billion compared to $2.6 billion at the end of September 2014. BALDA AG The company said its supervisory board relieved directors of two divisions of their duties with immediate effect. BMW, DAIMLER China will allow selected auto dealers registered in Shanghai's free trade zone to import and sell cars without the consent of foreign carmakers, according to an official notice published late on Wednesday. QIAGEN The genetic testing company announced the launch of a new-generation product to detect tuberculosis infections. HAYS British recruiting firm Hays reported an 11 percent rise in underlying second-quarter net fees, after it saw strong demand in Asia, continental Europe and Britain, adding to hopes that a global economic recovery is under way. TALKTALK TalkTalk Telecom Group announced the acquisition of the blinkbox movies business and the Tesco broadband and voice base from Tesco. (Reporting by Atul Prakash; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)
© Thomson Reuters 2016 All rights reserved.