Europe trades mixed, oil majors under pressure on court ruling

European indices are putting in a mixed performance on Thursday, following a mildly positive finish on Wall Street.

The FTSE trades flat. Resource stocks are tracing base metal prices higher, offsetting losses in the oil majors after a Dutch court ruled that Shell must slash emissions more aggressively than currently planned. The landmark Dutch ruling orders Shell to cut its CO2 emissions by 45% by 2030 (compared to 2019 levels). The move comes as the oil majors navigate an uncertain transition towards cleaner fuel and could well set a precedent for similar cases against large global polluters.

The DAX is underperforming its European peers, although it still hovers around its all-time high. The GFK German confidence survey for June ticked higher to -7, up from a downwardly revised -8.6. However, it still missed forecasts. Consumer confidence is returning to the Eurozone’s largest economy at a slower pace than expected.

The third wave of Covid is passing in Germany, with cases declining significantly across recent weeks. The vaccination programme has also ramped up and some German states have responded by a further opening of the economy. Conditions are lending themselves to the easing of tight lockdown restrictions. With this in mind, consumer confidence should pick up further in the coming months.

US GDP, jobless claims eyed

The economic calendar in Europe is pretty light. The lion’s share of data releases today will come from the US. US futures are edging slightly lower as investors brace themselves for a slew of numbers today, including a potential upward revision to Q1 GDP data and jobless claims, which are expected to fall to a fresh pandemic low. These numbers come ahead of tomorrow’s PCE inflation data.

Inflation jitters are making a comeback ahead of tomorrow’s data, which is pulling futures lower. Expectations are for a PCE jump to 2.9% YoY in April, up from 1.8% in March.

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Sophie Griffiths
Sophie Griffiths is a market analyst with OANDA, focusing on the UK and Europe. With almost 15 years of experience, she brings with her a deep-seated understanding of the financial markets, providing timely and relevant fundamental analysis across a broad range of asset classes.
Sophie Griffiths

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