European stocks are seen opening a tad higher on Wednesday after U.S. President Joe Biden announced more federal vaccination and testing sites to combat the winter surge in Covid-19 infections and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson ruled out stricter pandemic rules before Christmas.
Germany imposed new restrictions on private gatherings regardless of vaccination status while France is limiting New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Meanwhile, media reports suggest that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration could authorize two Covid-19 pills from Pfizer Inc. and Merck & Co. Inc. as soon as this week.
Asian markets were seeing marginal gains after Biden said it is still possible to reach a deal with Senator Joe Manchin to push the $2 trillion Build Back Better bill through Congress.
Oil and gold prices rose on dollar weakness as improved risk appetite countered concerns about the impending surge of Omicron, which is already dominant in several countries.
We can see another storm coming, WHO Europe regional director Dr. Hans Kluge said at a press conference in Vienna, and urged European governments to ramp up their vaccination campaigns, introduce additional measures and prepare critical infrastructure like health care systems to slow the spread.
In economic releases, the Office for National Statistics releases U.K. revised quarterly GDP data later in the day. The economy is forecast to grow 1.3 percent sequentially in the third quarter, after rising 5.5 percent in the second quarter.
The French statistical office Insee is slated to release producer price data for November. Economists expect producer prices to climb 2.5 percent sequentially, following a 2.9 percent rise in October.
Across the Atlantic, trading may be impacted by reaction to reports on consumer confidence and existing home sales.
U.S. stocks posted robust gains overnight, as the likes of Micron Technology, Nike and Rite Aid reported better than expected quarterly results and Moderna announced that a booster dose of its Covid-19 vaccine increased antibody levels against Omicron.
The Dow climbed 1.6 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite jumped as much as 2.4 percent and the S&P 500 added 1.8 percent.
European stocks bounced back from their worst drop in three weeks on Tuesday amid optimism that robust growth will continue over the medium term.
The pan European Stoxx 600, the German DAX, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 and France’s CAC 40 all surged up by 1.4 percent.
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