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Mining sector provides support
Royal Dutch Shell is still suffering from the profit-warning it issued this morning. The oil titan is managing expectations ahead of full-year results at the end of the month.
US markets in black
In the US the Dow Jones is up 20 points at 16,438, as mixed economic announcements keep the US equity market in positive territory. The decline in building permits was offset by a jump in housing starts, but the drop in Michigan consumer confidence took the market by surprise.
The world’s largest chipmaker Intel has recovered some it of its early losses after stating after the close last night that it does not foresee any revenue growth in 2014.
Copper is broadly unchanged as traders are squaring up their positions ahead of the Chinese GDP figures over the weekend.
Pound strong against doller
The pound has had a sterling performance versus the US dollar today, on the back of the retail sales report.