European Factors to Watch-Shares to rally as Greece set for aid
LONDON, July 8 (Reuters) - European stocks are seen opening higher on Monday, rebounding following sharp falls at the end of last week, with investors in the region focused on Greece as it looks set to reach a deal with its lenders over its latest aid payment. At 0623 GMT, futures for Euro STOXX 50, for UK's FTSE 100, for Germany's DAX and for France's CAC were 0.5 to 0.8 percent higher. Miners and banks bore the brunt of a European market drop on Friday after a stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs report raised expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve may soon start to slow its stimulus programme. But sentiment improved after EU and Greek officials said on Sunday that Greece was likely to reach a deal with foreign lenders reviewing its bailout before euro zone finance ministers meet on Monday to decide on further aid. Over the weekend Portugal's most recent crisis also eased, after the prime minister promoted the head of the junior coalition party to be his deputy on Saturday, hoping to end a political rift that threatened to bring down the government and endanger the country's own bailout. "European finance ministers meet to discuss all things Portugal, Cyprus and Greece, with the latter looking less concerning after the Greek Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras said the government will reach a deal with creditors in the short term," Chris Weston, chief market strategist at IG, said in a note. "So, with a stronger finish in the US and mixed Asian markets it looks as though Europe will open on a constructive footing." Wall Street pushed on to a positive close despite dipping in line with European stocks after the nonfarm payrolls report on Friday, taking heart from improved growth prospects and overcoming concerns that that the Federal Reserve may begin scaling back its stimulus efforts as soon as September. Also in focus on Monday will be a speech to European Parliament by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, as investors seek clues as to how long he will keep rates at record lows. On Thursday Draghi said the ECB would keep interest rates at record lows for an "extended" period and may yet cut further, helping the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 to its biggest gain in 11 months. "The forward guidance that was given was very vague when compared with other central banks," Craig Erlam, market analyst at Alpari, said. "Draghi may use today to clear this up, or at least provide more insight into why the ECB has chosen now to offer some kind of guidance on rates." -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- MARKET SNAPSHOT AT 0622 GMT: LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 1,631.89 1.02 % 16.48 NIKKEI 14,109.34 -1.4 % -200.63 MSCI ASIA EX-JP 492.78 -1.92 % -9.67 EUR/USD 1.2824 -0.05 % -0.0006 USD/JPY 101.01 -0.17 % -0.1700 10-YR US TSY YLD 2.696 -- -0.04 10-YR BUND YLD 1.707 -- -0.02 SPOT GOLD $1,222.00 -0.11 % -$1.31 US CRUDE $103.20 -0.02 % -0.02 > Asian shares fall on Fed taper fears after jobs data > Wall St gains as jobs data signals stronger economy > Nikkei drops on Asian markets' weakness > TREASURIES-Yields jump as U.S. jobs data stoke Fed fears > Dollar makes big strides as strong U.S. jobs sharpen Fed view > PRECIOUS-Gold falls as U.S jobs growth stokes stimulus fears > METALS-London copper edges up; U.S. stimulus worries cap gains > Brent crude hits 3-mth high on Egypt unrest, supply worries COMPANY NEWS: LUFTHANSA The airline's budget carrier Germanwings will be spared painful strikes during the nascent summer holiday season after reaching a preliminary accord with cabin crew on higher wages. 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For more click on CHARLES VOEGELE Tages-Anzeiger newspaper reports Voegele board has decided to sell the German, Belgian, Dutch and eastern European business and keep only the profitable Swiss and Austrian businesses; story cites spox as saying board only decided to withdraw from Poland and Czech Republic and declines to comment on sale plans For more click on DAIMLER France has blocked the registration of some new Daimler Mercedes cars which an EU source said was because of a controversial air conditioning coolant. Related news THYSSENKRUPP The steelmaker has not made any decisions on any capital increase nor are there concrete plans for such a move, a spokesman told Reuters, reacting to a German newspaper report that said it was preparing for a 790 million euro ($1 billion) capital hike in September. 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Related news SAP The business software company needs to improve its user interfaces or it risks losing core customers like Swiss food company Nestle, WirtschaftsWoche reported on Saturday, citing an interview with chairman Hasso Plattner. Separately, SAP should set up shops in large cities to promote and sell its software, the magazine cited Plattner as saying. Related news E.ON Germany's largest utility stood by its Brazilian investments, saying the business model of its MPX subsidiary offered "a chance for growth and profits", Der Spiegel reported, citing Chief Executive Johannes Teyssen. Related news KERING The company said it completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Italian jewellery group Pomellato. VIVENDI The entertainment-to-telecom group is exploring alternative moves to extract cash from its Activision Blizzard unit after failing to sell part of its 61-percent stake in the U.S. video games business, the Financial Times reported on its website on Sunday. BNP PARIBAS The French bank is buying a 50 percent stake in Dutch bank ING's Chinese insurance joint venture. BP The number of claims filed against BP Plc's oil spill compensation fund has risen by 18 percent over the last six weeks to a total of 195,403, according to the claims website - even though payouts began almost a year ago and the fund will be accepting claims until next April. LLOYDS BANKING GROUP Singapore state investor Temasek has not approached the British government about buying a 4.5 billion pound ($6.70 billion) stake in part-nationalised Lloyds Banking Group, industry sources told Reuters on Sunday.