European markets to open weaker as Brexit talks resume; oil in focus

Big 5
European markets are expected to open on a slightly negative note on Monday, as investors gear up for the next round of Brexit talks in Europe, while keeping a close eye on the moves in oil.

Looking to major bourses, the German DAX is set to start lower, off 12 points at 12,155, while the French CAC is expected to open lower, down 13 points at 5,091, according to IG. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 will be closed on Monday due to a public holiday.

Monday will mark the kickoff of the U.K. and European Union’s (EU) third round of Article 50 negotiations, where officials are set to meet in Brussels.

Earlier this year, Chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier said that the third round of talks must be about “clarification” in terms of where the U.K. stands on certain issues, including financial settlements.

The U.K. however is expected to advise the EU to show imagination and flexibility in the upcoming talks, and focus on the two regions’ future ties instead of a settlement concerning the U.K.’s exit bill and other divorce dilemmas, Reuters reported. Stepping aside from politics, investors are likely to be paying close attention to the moves in oil as sentiment remains on edge after Hurricane Harvey struck the U.S., in particular Texas, over the weekend, causing a number of refineries to temporarily shut down.

At 6.25 a.m. London time (1.25 a.m ET), Brent eked out gains, trading at $52.57 a barrel, while U.S. crude slipped into the red, last standing at $47.69.

Sentiment in Asian markets was mostly positive yet showed signs of slight weakness on Monday, as the turbulence in oil weighed, while investors were also digesting comments made by central bankers at Jackson Hole last week.

At the gathering on Friday, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said that protectionist policies could pose a “serious risk” to the global economy’s growth, yet added that the global economic recovery looked like it was firming up.

Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said that while actions made by regulators following the crisis had made the financial system safer, some modifications to regulations could still be required.

No major earnings are set to be released on Monday. On the data front, Italian consumer and business confidence numbers are due out in morning trade.

Source: CNBC