RTTNews - The major European averages are likely to open flat with a positive bias on Tuesday after the U.S. markets held their ground overnight despite showing weakness for most of the session. Economic data and corporate earnings are fairly positive. That said, stocks could move in a choppy fashion, as participants look to cash in on recent rallies.
The economic calendar for Europe is relatively light, with only British Distributive Trade Survey results due to be released in the session. Investors may also await June consumer confidence figures and the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index from the U.S., for signs of recovery in the global economy.
After exhibiting a mixed trend in early trading, Asian stock markets edged higher on Tuesday on optimism about company earnings.
On Wall Street, stocks staged a modest rally in late session trading on low volumes. A report from the commerce department showed that new home sales jumped 11% to an annual rate of 384,000 in June from the revised May rate of 346,000, the sharpest increase in nearly nine years. The stronger than expected sales growth came amid a pullback in prices, with the median sales price of new houses sold in June falling 5.8 percent to $206,200 from $219,000 in the previous month. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up by 0.17%, the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.1% and the S%P 500 index edged up 0.3%.
Crude oil futures finished a choppy session mildly higher on Monday, as encouraging U.S. housing data sparked hopes that better days may be ahead for energy demand. After settling at $68.38 a barrel, up 33 cents or 0.48% in New York trading on Monday, light sweet crude oil for September delivery rose further to $68.56 a barrel in Asian trading on Tuesday.
In corporate news, Amgen and GlaxoSmithKline announced a collaboration in which the companies will share commercialization of Amgen's monoclonal antibody denosumab for postmenopausal osteoporosis in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Mexico, once the product is approved in these countries.
Koninklijke Ahold NV reported that its second-quarter consolidated net sales rose 11.5% to 6.43 billion euros from 5.77 billion euros a year ago. At constant exchange rates, the sales growth was 3.9%.
Deutsche Bank AG's second-quarter net profit grew a better-than-expected 68 percent to 1.092 billion euros. UK oil giant BP has said its second-quarter profits tumbled 53% from a year-ago period due to lower oil prices.
Sage Group plc, in its interim management statement, said it expects fiscal 2009 results to be in line with market expectations. Shire plc, a bio-pharmaceutical company, said it received a complete response letter for INTUNIV, extended release from the Food and Drug Administration or FDA.
The European markets rose on Monday, as mining and energy stocks gained after copper and crude oil prices advanced on speculation that demand will rise on a global economic recovery. The FTSEurofirst 300 index of pan-European blue chips closed 0.46% higher, while the narrower DJ Stoxx 50 index rose 0.63%. Around Europe, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 index advanced 0.21%, France's CAC 40 index gained 0.18% and Germany's DAX index added 0.42%.
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