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FTSE 100 watch: Index seen marginally lower after mixed leads

The UK benchmark index looks set to open marginally lower in London this morning, giving up some of the previous session’s gains, following mixed leads from the US and Asia. On the corporate front, the earnings season continues with BP (LON:BP). RBS (LON:RBS) will also be in focus as the government has set out its exit strategy from its biggest taxpayer-funded bailout of the financial crisis, announcing plans to sell all of its shares in the FTSE 100 lender, Reuters reports.

Lower start ahead

IG’s opening calls suggest that the Footsie will start the session 0.12 percent lower at 7,018 points. In the US, stocks closed lower last night, giving up gains posted earlier in the session. CNBC reports that traders blamed the possibility of more US-China tariffs coupled with a drop in tech shares. In Asia, shares mostly rose benefitting from comments by China’s securities regulator.

“At this point, nobody can say the equity market is bottoming out. Global investor sentiment remains shaky,” said Yasuo Sakuma, chief investment officer at Libra Investments, as quoted by Reuters.

At home, the Footsie rallied in the previous session, gaining 86.76 points to close 1.25 percent higher at 7,026.32. The index found support in heavyweight HSBC Holdings (LON:HSBA), whose shares rallied nearly five percent as the group posted a rise in profits for the third quarter.

Tuesday’s releases

Today’s macroeconomic statements include October unemployment data from Germany, due out at 08:55 GMT, to be followed the flash third-quarter GDP data for the eurozone at 10:00 GMT. Germany’s preliminary inflation numbers for October are out at 13:00 GMT, while in the US, the nation’s consumer confidence data for October will be announced at 14:00 GMT.

In company releases, BP will update investors on its third-quarter performance. Anglo-Dutch consumer goods group Reckitt Benckiser (LON:RB) is also reporting today.

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