The waiting game By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A shopping cart is seen in a supermarket in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., June 10, 2022. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

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A look at the day ahead in European and global markets from Ankur Banerjee

After a string of hawkish commentary from central bank officials, investors lost their risk appetite towards the end of the week, with the U.S. dollar on the front foot and Asian stocks headed for a second straight week in the red.

Worries over an economic slowdown, the direction of inflation and concerns about the pace of monetary tightening are all weighing on sentiment. And so we wait for next week, when the U.S. CPI data due on Tuesday will shed light on whether disinflation is well and truly underway.

But before that, UK GDP data for fourth quarter is due later on Friday and is expected to be flat, according to a Reuters poll. Britain’s blue-chip touched a new all-time high on Thursday. That’s the third time it has scaled a new peak in less than a week and the GDP report will likely influence the market on the day.

Investors are also waiting for Japan’s government to present the new Bank of Japan governor nominee, also due on Tuesday. Data on Friday showed wholesale prices in January rose 9.5% from a year earlier, yet another sign of inflationary strains that could keep the central bank under pressure to phase out its massive stimulus programme.

Meanwhile, China’s January factory gate prices fell more than economists expected, while the consumer price index was 2.1% higher than a year earlier in the month but just shy of the 2.2% increase economists had predicted in a Reuters poll.

In the corporate world, attention will be on Britain’s Standard Chartered (OTC:) after fresh reports emerged of renewed interest from First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB), the United Arab Emirates’ biggest lender, in acquiring the bank. FAB on Friday said it was not currently evaluating a possible offer for StanChart.

Over in the Adani saga, index provider MSCI is cutting the weightings of four Adani Group companies, including flagship firm Adani Enterprises, in a blow to the conglomerate.

Since short-seller Hindenburg published its report on Adani last month, some $110 billion has been wiped off the value of the group’s main seven listed firms.

Key developments that could influence markets on Friday:

Economic events: UK GDP, manufacturing and industrial output

Speakers: ECB board member Luis de Guindos, BOE’s Huw Pill

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