Traders await manufacturing data

European equity markets have spent the morning perfecting their 'Bambi' style of trading — shaky at the start but slowly finding their feet. 

Source: Bloomberg

Today it’s all about manufacturing kicking things off. The overnight figures from China have shown that it has managed to remain on the side of growth, although HSBC’s version is a little less optimistic. Today will also see the UK, eurozone and the US all offer up their manufacturing figures as traders will be given further insight into how well the varying economic regions are faring.

This afternoon will also see the latest US ADP figures, an indicator that has a less than impressive track record of indicating how Friday's non-farm payrolls will come in. Yesterday’s deadline for talks on Iran has been extended, increasing the market's assumption that a little more lenience towards the country’s oil exports could soon be on the way.

ASOS, for so long the poster child for the new modern, online consumer shopping demographic, has had a rough year and following several profit warnings has seen first-half profits fall by 10% - a much better performance than the markets had feared. CEO and founding member Nick Robertson has stated that he is optimistic for the second half, when numerous overseas actions should start to gain traction.

Evraz has seen full-year losses almost triple up to $1.3 billion in 2014 as the UK-quoted Russian steel manufacturing firm continues to battle both weak demand and stifling sanctions.

Transport firm Firstgroup has seen its bus division drive the company’s figures higher with improving cost efficiencies, while the train division is on track to outperform earnings expectations and revenue. 

European equity wobbles were highly contagious as yesterday saw the Dow Jones sell off by 200 points. However, it is worth noting the close was at considerably better levels than the intraday low had been indicating. The short week will see traders focus their attention in the run up to what will be a long weekend, but before that can be enjoyed the hurdles of today’s ADP figures and Friday's non-farm payrolls need to be negotiated.

Ahead of the open we expect the Dow to start 23 points lower, at 17,753.

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