European stocks seen higher ahead of critical EU summit

European stocks were expected to open cautiously higher Tuesday as investors look ahead to a critical meeting between U.K. and European Union leaders, which will likely decide the fate of Brexit.

The FTSE 100 was seen edging around 2 points higher to 7,215, the DAX was expected to climb around 14 points to 12,501 and the CAC 40 was set to gain around 11 points to open up at 5,654, according to IG data.

A deal to ensure a smooth transition out of the EU for Britain on October 31 was balanced on a knife edge Monday, with several British news outlets reporting that EU diplomats wanted more concessions from Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Stocks also retreated Monday after news that China wants to conduct further talks before putting pen to paper on the first phase of a partial trade deal with the U.S., reportedly requesting a halt to further tariffs from Washington scheduled for December.

U.S. Trade Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC Monday that December’s tariffs would likely go ahead without a deal in place between the world’s two largest economies.

Asian stocks traded mixed on Tuesday as investors took a cautious approach to trade developments. Chinese markets fell after pork prices in China jumped around 69 percent on-year in September following an outbreak of African swine fever.

Overall CPI (consumer price index) inflation climbed around 3 percent on-year while the producer price index fell by 1.2 percent.

Stateside, foreign policy remains center stage after President Donald Trump imposed sanctions on Turkey and halted trade negotiations with Ankara, along with raising tariffs on Turkish steel by 50 percent, in a bit to stop the NATO ally’s incursion in northeast Syria.

Back in Europe, Spain’s Supreme Court on Monday jailed nine Catalan separatist leaders for their role in what was deemed an illegal independence bid in 2017, sparking mass protests in Barcelona.

Meanwhile in Poland, the populist Law and Justice (PiS) party secured a second term in power following Sunday’s parliamentary election, but lost the upper house.

Earnings season kicks off in earnest across the Atlantic on Tuesday, with Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, BlackRock, and J.P. Morgan Chase all due to report before the bell on Wall Street.

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