European markets called to open flat to negative on Friday 31 August 2012

<p>European markets were called to open flat to negative as the final day of the trading week approached after a weak session in US trading […]</p>

European markets were called to open flat to negative as the final day of the trading week approached after a weak session in US trading and as traders eyed the Jackson Hole economic symposium, where Ben Bernanke, the Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, is set to speak.

The FTSE was expected to open at 5717, down 2pts, whilst the DAX was called to open at 6902, up 7pts and the CAC at 3381, up 2 pts.

German retail sales for July slumped unexpectedly by 0.9% when a small rise of 0.2% had been widely expected. Previous sales were upwardly revised to 0.5% from an original estimate of -0.2%.
Later in the morning session we will also see the latest euro zone unemployment figures, where it is expected that the unemployment rate will nudge higher to 11.3%. Euro zone inflation is also expected to rise to 2.5% from 2.4%.

This afternoon also see’s a raft of US economic data including Chicago PMI, Factory Orders and Consumer Sentiment.

Allied with the raft of economic data is the Jackson Hole symposium and so it is expected that the markets will be somewhat headline driven today.

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