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Europe markets set to open lower as investors monitor inflation data, Afghanistan crisis


LONDON — European markets are set to open slightly lower on Tuesday, on track to extend losses after snapping a 10-day winning streak in the previous session.

Of the major bourses, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 index was expected to open down around 10 points at 7,136, France’s CAC 40 was seen 4 points lower at 6,829, while Germany’s DAX was little changed at 15,894, according to IG.

Shares in Asia-Pacific were mostly lower overnight, with Chinese internet stocks in Hong Kong falling again as regulatory fears resurfaced. Tencent, Alibaba and JD.com were all seen trading lower, shortly after China’s market regulator issued draft rules designed to prevent unfair competition on the internet.

On Wall Street, U.S. stock index futures were seen slightly lower after the Dow and S&P 500 on Monday closed at record highs during regular trading.

Back in Europe, market participants are likely to closely monitor economic data. U.K. inflation rate data for July is scheduled at 7 a.m. London time, with euro area inflation rate figures for last month expected later in the session.

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic and spread of the highly transmissible delta Covid-19 variant has rattled market confidence. Investors are also monitoring the potential geopolitical implications following the Taliban’s seizure of Kabul, the capital city of Afghanistan.

U.S. President Joe Biden rejected blame for the scenes of turmoil and panic as thousands of people were seen at a Kabul airport desperately trying to flee.

Biden described the anguish of those trapped in the country as “gut-wrenching” and conceded the Taliban’s lightning offensive had occurred more quickly than expected. His comments came amid mounting criticism of his administration’s handling of the situation.

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