European Stock Futures Mixed; U.S. CPI Release in Focus

European stock markets are expected to open in a mixed fashion Tuesday, with investors cautious ahead of the release of U.S. inflation data that will offer a crucial guide to the Federal Reserve’s interest rate outlook.

At 02:00 ET (06:00 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 0.3% lower, while CAC 40 futures in France climbed 0.1%, and the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. rose 0.1%.

Economic data are likely to set the tone Tuesday, with the U.K. claimant count rising 6,300 in August, a disappointing number, but the unemployment rate falling to 3.6% from 3.8%, suggesting the country’s labor market remained healthy despite the headwinds associated with rising prices.

German consumer prices rose 0.3% on the month in August, a slowing in growth from 0.9% the previous month, but the annual figure still climbed to 7.9% from 7.5%.

These German inflation numbers are likely to point to an ugly ZEW economic sentiment survey later in the session. However, they are still likely to be overshadowed by the release of the U.S. data, due at 08:30 ET (12:30 GMT), as the U.S. CPI numbers will frame the Fed’s policy meeting next week and set the tone for weeks to come.

Expectations are for a slowdown in headline CPI, thanks to energy and commodity prices backing down from peaks, but for core prices to stay elevated.

The markets are currently factoring in roughly a 90% chance that the Federal Reserve lifts its benchmark interest rate by 75 basis points at next week’s policy meeting.

In corporate news, UBS will be in the spotlight Tuesday after the Swiss banking group announced plans to increase its dividend and anticipates its share repurchases will exceed $5 billion for 2022.

Oil prices edged lower Tuesday ahead of the release of not only the U.S. inflation data, which will likely impact the dollar, but also the OPEC’s monthly outlook report.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies agreed last week to reduce crude production, and traders will look to the report, due later in the session, for more cues on global demand.

Crude hit the lowest level since January last week on concerns over global growth, including in top importer China, where renewed COVID-19 restrictions are impacting activity.

By 02:00 ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.1% lower at $87.66 a barrel, while the Brent contract fell 0.2% to $93.79.

Additionally, gold futures fell 0.5% to $1,732.05/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.2% higher at 1.0138.

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