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European Factors-Shares seen opening lower, data eyed

Source: Reuters - Wed 26th Aug 2009

European shares were expected to open lower onWednesday after hitting their highest close since early October in the previoussession, with investors seen trading cautiously at the fag end of the summerholiday season.

Futures for the Euro STOXX 50, Germany's DAX and the French CAC 40 fell 0.2 to 0.3 percent. Financial bookmakers earlier predictedritain's FTSE 100 to open 1 to 2 points lower.

Japan's Nikkei stock average rose to a fresh 10-month high on Wednesday, while U.S. stocks gained on Tuesday as economic data and there nomination of Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke reassured investors and offset concerns about red ink in the federal budget.

Larger-than-expected gains in U.S. housing prices and consumer confidence on Tuesday lent new weight to views that the economy is emerging from the longest recession since the 1930s. U.S. single-family home prices rose for the second month in a row in June, according to a closely watched index, and consumer confidence jumped in August.

The FTSEuro first 300 index of top European shares closed up 0.4 percent at 978.76 points on Tuesday, rising for the fourth consecutive day. The index is up 17 percent this year and has surged 52 percent from a record low in March.

Investors will focus on July U.S. durable goods numbers, due at 1230 GMT, with an increase of 3.2 percent expected for July, after 2.2 percent decline inJune. July U.S. new home sales will be released at 1400 GMT, with 0.39 million sales expected, up marginally from 0.384 million in June.

German Ifo business climate figures for August are due at 0800 GMT. German July import prices are seen dropping 0.6 percent month-on-month and down 12.3 percent year-on-year.

Data showed Japan's exports slipped in July as annual drops in exports tothe United States and China accelerated

The world's third-largest brewer reported a better-than-expected rise in first-half operating profit on Wednesday, driven by cost savings as volumes fell. EBIT before exceptionals increased to 993 million euros, up 13 percentlike-for-like.

Chilean copper miner Antofagasta on Wednesday posted lower-than-expected earnings per share in the first half and warned that copper prices were likely to remain volatile in the second half of the year.

WPP GROUP, The world's largest advertising group by revenue, said it expects to see amarked improvement in second-half profitability after posting first halflike-for-like sales down 8.3 percent.

Swiss Life beat expectations with a 13 percent rise in first-half net profit, the insurer said on Wednesday, adding that it would cut 520 jobs and save up to 400 million Swiss francs.


The bank may have to write off as much as 500 million pounds on loans itmade to pubs group Admiral Taverns, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday.


President Nicolas Sarkozy unveiled new rules for French banks to limit traders' bonuses on Tuesday and said he would fight to persuade other G20 leaders to adopt the same position.


The water and waste management group lowered its full-year sales and core earnings guidance as a sharp drop in waste collection pushed the French environmental services group's half-year profits lower.


French bank BPCE guaranteed billions of toxic assets at its struggling investment bank, which posted another quarterly loss on Wednesday but said it hoped to return to profit soon.


Britain's healthcare cost-effectiveness watchdog has rejected an appeal tomake three drugs available to kidney cancer patients on the state National Health Service (NHS), angering drugmakers and patients.

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