investors look to recovery, easing fears of seas

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European equities were on the mute on Friday morning as investors watched for the prospect of a steady economic rebound and fears of waning monetary stimulus.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 hovered around the flat line at the start of trading. Construction and materials increased 0.6% while autos declined 0.8%.

Asia-Pacific stocks rose broadly during Friday’s session, led by the Hong Kong Hang Seng Index, while US equity futures pointed to a higher open on Wall Street later in the day. .

Investors will be watching a key indicator of inflation in the United States on Friday when the Commerce Department releases the Core Personal Consumption Expenditure Index.

Economists polled by Dow Jones expect prices to rise 3.4% in May from a year earlier. They expect an increase of 0.6% from April to May.

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In Europe, the UK is expected to release plans next month to lift travel restrictions for fully vaccinated people, except for those with the highest level of Covid-19 risk.

Meanwhile, the Bank of England forecast inflation to exceed 3% at its peak on Thursday before easing, but insisted the spike above its 2% target would be transient and maintained its monetary stimulus at full speed.

The German GFK Consumer Confidence Index, released Friday before the bell, showed consumer confidence in Europe’s largest economy to stand at -0.3 points by July, significantly beating the consensus forecast of -4.0, and against -6.9 the previous month.

Movement in individual stock prices was minimal at the start of trading, with Swedish Evolution being the biggest driver of the Stoxx 600, adding 4.5%.

Adidas climbed 4% after US rival Nike beat quarterly earnings expectations and offered strong guidance for the full year.

– CNBC’s Maggie Fitzgerald contributed to this report.

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