European stocks higher; PMIs mixed, Nvidia earnings due later

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European stocks higher; PMIs mixed, Nvidia earnings due later
Credit: © Reuters.

Investing.com - European stock markets traded higher Wednesday, with investors carefully studying key regional activity data as well as eagerly awaited quarterly earnings from chip maker Nvidia.

At 03:30 ET (07:30 GMT), the DAX  index in Germany traded 0.4% higher, the CAC 40  in France climbed 0.5% and the FTSE 100  in the U.K. rose 0.3%.

Flash PMIs on the data slate

European investors are focusing Wednesday on the release of the flash readings of August PMIs for both the manufacturing and services sectors, as a health check on the European economic recovery.

Eurozone and U.K. PMIs have been sliding in recent months, amid stagnation in the service sector coupled with a contraction in the manufacturing activity.

Data from France provided mixed news Wednesday, as its manufacturing PMI rose more than expected, while staying in contraction territory, but its services index retreated slightly.  

There was similar news out of Germany, as the eurozone's largest economy saw its manufacturing PMI improve slightly, from a weak base, but its services PMI slumped into contraction territory.

Today’s numbers could provide insights into whether the European Central Bank will hike interest rates again in September and if the Bank of England opts for a big rate increase given inflation remains highly elevated.

The eurozone consumer confidence release for the month of August is also expected later in the session, and is expected to show a small improvement from very weak levels. 

Central bankers convene at Jackson Hole 

The Fed’s Jackson Hole symposium at the end of the week is likely to keep trading within tight trading ranges this week, as investors warily await guidance of where the U.S. central bank goes next with its monetary policy.

While Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s speech on Friday will be the event’s highlight, European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde and Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey are also scheduled to speak, as central bankers from around the globe convene in Wyoming.

Nvidia results after the close

The quarterly earnings season is gradually coming to a close in Europe.

Roche (SIX: RO ) stock rose 3.6% after the Swiss drugmaker said it had been made aware of an inadvertent disclosure in a study of its new immunotherapy for patients with lung cancer.

Still, the spotlight Wednesday is likely to be on the results from Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA ) after the closing bell on Wall Street.

The world’s most valuable chipmaker is at the center of global AI euphoria, tripling in value year-to-date, on the back of the rise of ChatGPT and other generative AI apps, virtually all of which are powered by its graphics processors.

Nvidia stunned the market in May, when a stellar forecast sent its stock soaring 24% in one day. The outsized gains this year creates the possibility of a sharp swing for the shares in either direction by the end of the week. 

Crude edges higher after API inventories

Oil prices edged lower Wednesday, despite another fall in U.S. crude stocks, but trading ranges remain tight ahead of the Jackson Hole symposium at the end of the week.

Crude inventories dropped by about 2.4 million barrels last week, according to data from industry body American Petroleum Institute Tuesday. This follows the massive draw of 6.2 million barrels a week earlier, suggesting overall supply conditions are still tight.

The weekly report from the Energy Information Administration , the statistical arm of the U.S. energy department, is due later Wednesday.

By 03:30 ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.5% lower at $79.25 a barrel, while the Brent contract dropped 0.5% to $83.58. 

Additionally, gold futures rose 0.3% to $1,932.45/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.1% lower at 1.0835.

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