European stocks open to close, data WEF, Fed minutes

LONDON — European stocks are expected to open mixed Thursday as markets digest the latest signals from the U.S. Federal Reserve regarding rate hikes.

The U.K.’s FTSE index is seen opening 4 points lower at 7,526, Germany’s DAX up 7 points at 14,040, France’s CAC 40 up 2 points at 6,310 and Italy’s FTSE MIB 39 points higher at 24,234, according to data from IG.

The cautious open expected for European stocks comes after a higher close Wednesday as global markets tried to bounce back from a widespread retreat in the previous session.

In the U.S., stocks rose Wednesday after the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s May policy meeting showed the central bank is prepared to raise rates further than the market had anticipated.

The minutes from the Fed’s May 3-4 meeting showed officials saw the need to raise rates quickly, and possibly more than the market has priced in, to quell the recent inflationary pressures.

Asia-Pacific stocks struggled for direction in Thursday morning trade as investors reacted to the Fed minutes. U.S. stock futures were also mixed Wednesday evening as investors digested a disappointing update from Nvidia, an economic bellwether in the technology industry.

It’s the last day of the World Economic Forum on Thursday, bringing to an end an event that sees global business and political leaders come together to discuss the world’s most pressing problems, with the war in Ukraine topping the agenda.

On Thursday, CNBC will be interviewing Bulgaria’s prime minister, the vice president of Palantir, the CEOs of CEPI and Signify and others.

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