European Inventory Futures Edge larger; Chinese language dates assist

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From Peter Nurse – European equity markets will end the week cautiously on fears over a highly anticipated coronavirus vaccine, although strong data from China helped the tone.

At 2:00 a.m. CET (7:00 a.m. GMT) the contract rose 0.1% in Germany and 0.1% in France, while the UK contract was largely unchanged.

Positive news about potential vaccines to treat Covid-19 has fueled strong gains in global equity markets recently, but doubts have surfaced about the veracity of AstraZeneca's (NASDAQ 🙂 's coronavirus drug results.

This drug has been seen as the best candidate to help the developing world because of its cheap cost and relatively easy storage and transportation.

Those doubts could hurt its chances of getting US and EU regulatory approval swiftly, especially if Pascal Soriot, CEO of AstraZeneca, said Thursday that the company is now likely to conduct an additional global study.

On Thursday, UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the final details of a regional system that will go into effect if blanket restrictions on England's 55 million residents end after a month-long lockdown and almost half of the population still face very severe restrictions how the virus continues to claim lives.

On the upside, China's October growth rose at the fastest monthly pace in nearly nine years. This is yet another sign that economic recovery is picking up speed in the world's second largest economy and an important trading region for European businesses.

Wall Street will reopen for half a session on Friday after Thanksgiving, but trading volume is likely to remain low.

In corporate news, Unilever (NYSE 🙂 will be in the spotlight when the consumer goods maker last trades in Amsterdam before its Dutch and UK corporate arms merge over the weekend into a London-based legal entity that ends as a hybrid for 90 years.

Oil prices weakened Friday, pulling back from an eight-month high in thin trading on the US holidays. The traders look to the meeting of the big oil producers in the next week.

It is widely expected that OPEC and its allies, a group known as OPEC +, will decide to keep the current limit on supply, rather than increasing it by 2 million barrels a day as previously agreed in January when it closes at the end of the Meeting month. However, given the recent surge in crude oil prices, this is not the general opinion within the group.

Futures traded 1.7% lower at $ 44.94 a barrel, while the international reference contract fell 0.3% to $ 47.87. Both benchmarks are up around 6% this week.

Elsewhere, it rose 0.1% to $ 1,806.25 / ounce while trading 0.1% higher at 1.1925.

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