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European markets seen mixed amid earnings, economic data

European stocks are set to open mixed Thursday morning, amid rising hopes the world's two largest economies could soon secure a trade deal to end a protracted dispute.

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The FTSE 100 is seen 8 points lower at 7,220, the CAC is expected to open 19 points higher at 5,214, while the DAX is poised to start 51 points higher at 11,452, according to IG.

Market focus is largely attuned to global trade developments, after U.S. and Chinese officials reportedly started to outline commitments in principle on the stickiest issues in their long-running trade dispute.

President Donald Trump has suggested he might be willing to extend the March 1 deadline for a deal, which would stop an immediate increase in tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports to 25 percent from 10 percent.

In Asia, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares, excluding Japan, rose 0.4 percent — hitting its highest level since early October.

The four-and-a-half-month highs in Asia came after the U.S. Federal Reserve confirmed on Wednesday that it would be "patient" on future interest rate hikes.

Back in Europe, investors are likely to closely monitor a fresh batch of economic data. Germany and Italy are both expected to publish a final reading of annualized inflation rate data for January during morning trade.

The euro area will publish a flash reading of Markit Manufacturing PMI and Markit Services PMI for February at around 9 a.m. London time.

In corporate news, Maersk Group, Barclays and Anglo American are among the major companies expected to report their latest quarterly earnings on Thursday.


More From: Business, CNBC
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