January 17, 2018 / 7:54 AM / a year ago

LIVE MARKETS-What you need to know

    * European shares seen lower
    * Wall Street gains evaporate
    * Earnings in focus: ASML, Casino, Pearson

    Jan 17 (Reuters) - Welcome to the home for real time coverage of European equity markets
brought to you by Reuters stocks reporters and anchored today by Danilo Masoni. Reach him on
Messenger to share your thoughts on market moves: danilo.masoni.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net  
    European shares are expected to open lower today with index futures pointing to losses of
around 0.1-0.4 percent, as markets pull back following a new year rally that a lifted the
pan-European STOXX 600 benchmark to its highest since August 2015.  
    Earnings are likely to be the main focus with ASML in the spotlight after the chip
tool maker reported a better-than-expected net profit for the fourth quarter as several
customers asked for early delivery of products amid a booming semiconductor industry. For 2018,
the company said it expected continued solid growth of sales and profitability. Eyes also on
retailer Casino, which said it would deliver on its 2017 profit growth forecasts
despite posting slightly softer fourth quarter sales, and manufacturing group Alstom,
which reported higher third-quarter sales and kept its 2020 financial targets. UK education
group Pearson predicted underlying profit growth in 2018 despite ongoing pressures in
its North American business.  
    In M&A, Britain's Informa made a cash and paper offer to buy events organiser UBM
, while Nestle agreed to sell its U.S. confectionery business to Italy's Ferrero
for $2.8 billion. Baader Bank noted Nestle got an attractive price for a business that's losing
market share.
    Interserve could be hit after the FT reported that the construction service provider
was under UK government watch over financial health fears.
    Other stock movers: European car sales drop 4.8 pct in December, Rio Tinto says U.S. SEC
fraud case should be dismissed; Novartis's Kymriah wins speedy reviews in U.S., Europe; UK
cinema chain Cineworld's 2017 revenue grows as Star Wars, Dunkirk shine. 
    (Danilo Masoni)
    What would it take? According to Rabobank, a trade war waged by Donald Trump on China has
the potential to bring down global markets in the most dramatic way. 
    "The little hiccup we got in equities yesterday could -- perhaps -- start to look more like
what Bitcoin just did", it wrote in its morning note as world leaders nervously await the U.S.
president's speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos next week. 
    Here's bitcoin's fall these last three days: 
    (Julien Ponthus) 
    Stock futures in Europe have opened in the red with declines of around 0.3 percent.    
    (Danilo Masoni)
    The richly valued tech sector is one to watch this morning after the Dutch supplier
of equipment to key chip makers reported a better-than-expected net profit for the fourth
    Several customers asked for early delivery of products amid a booming semiconductor
industry, helping ASML's net profit rise to 644 million euros from 524 million euros.
Analysts polled for Reuters had expected profit of 454 million euros.
    Tech stocks are leading sectoral gainers in Europe over the last 12 months but some
investors say the sector's golden era may be over.    
    (Danilo Masoni)
    Good morning and welcome to Live Markets. Following a steady close in the previous session,
financial spreadbetters expect European to open lower today as gains on Wall Street evaporated,
dragged by a weaker energy sector and losses in General Electric shares.
    Over in Asia, stocks stepped back from a record high as the region's resource shares were
hit by falling oil and commodity prices.
    Here are your morning calls, courtesy of CMC Markets:
    FTSE100 is expected to open 21 points lower at 7,734
    DAX is expected to open 64 points lower at 13,182
    CAC40 is expected to open 20 points lower at 5,494
    (Danilo Masoni)

 (Reporting by Danilo Masoni, Helen Reid, Kit Rees and Julien Ponthus)
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