(Bloomberg) -- European equities were little changed at the open as technology and mining shares climbed before the start of U.S.-China trade talks, while financial services slumped.
The STOXX 600 Index was up 0.1% following two days of gains. Qiagen NV (DE: QIA ) tumbled 15% after reporting disappointing earnings and as its chief, Peer Schatz, decided to step down. Uniper SE (DE: UN01 ) dropped 6.2% after Fortum Oyj (HE: FORTUM ) agreed to acquire a majority stake in the company. Fortum gained 2.5%. Electrocomponents Plc jumped 4.7% after saying it’s on track to deliver good progress for the year.
The region’s equities last week had their worst drop in two months as concerns about global growth sent investors searching for the exit. Now all eyes are on the U.S.-China trade talks, which start in Washington later this week. A breakthrough in negotiations would be a major boon for equity markets, which are struggling to find a reason to recover.
“The markets are driven higher by positive Asian markets, trade hope and trend-following strategies,” aid Ulrich Urbahn, head of multi-asset strategy and research at Joh Berenberg Gossler & Co. “However, given the lackluster macro data, increasing policy uncertainty and the overly optimistic 2020 earnings estimates, the upside should be capped."
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