European Shares Seen Mixed In Thin Trade

European stocks are seen opening on a mixed note Monday, with travel-related stocks likely to be in focus as air travel sees a turbulent start to 2022 over Omicron worries.

The overall number of global coronavirus cases has crossed 290 million amid rapid surge in Omicron cases, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The highly transmissible omicron variant has caused Britain’s daily new caseload to soar over Christmas and the New Year, with a new daily high of 189,000 on Dec. 31.

Meanwhile, new studies in the U.K. have found that a third dose of Covid-19 vaccine can boost a person’s resistance to Omicron variant of coronavirus by as much as 88 percent.

Asian markets traded mixed in thin trade, with Chinese, Australian and Japanese markets closed for holidays.

Gold hit a six-month high amid dollar weakness and declining U.S. Treasury yields, while Brent crude hovered around $78 per barrel as Libyan supply tightened ahead of an OPEC+ meeting on Tuesday to discuss production policy for February.

China’s battered property developers and regulatory crackdown are again in focus after China Evergrande Group Hong Kong shares were suspended from trading earlier in the day.

Traders also looked ahead to the release of China’s Caixin manufacturing and service PMIs, due later in the week for additional clues to economic recovery.

Closer home, final manufacturing PMIs from Germany, France and Eurozone will be in focus later today.

Across the Atlantic, the monthly jobs report is likely to be in the spotlight in the first week of the New Year, along with other reports on manufacturing and service sector activity. The minutes of the latest Federal Reserve meeting may also attract some attention.

U.S. stocks fell on Friday but notched their biggest three-year advance since 1999 on optimism over the economic recovery. The Dow slipped 0.2 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite shed 0.6 percent and the S&P 500 dipped 0.3 percent.

European stocks inched lower on Friday amid surging Covid-19 infections around the world. The pan European Stoxx 600 ended flat with a negative bias.

The U.K.’s FTSE 100 index and France’s CAC 40 index both fell around 0.3 percent while the German markets were closed for New Year Eve.

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