European markets open for closing, China data, US bank earnings

European equities were about to open slightly higher on Friday after a new wave of global interest rate rises exacerbated fears of the prospect of economic growth.

Britain’s FTSE 100 index was last seen trading up 33 points to 7,088 before the opening clock, France’s CAC 40 index traded 44 points higher at 5,959, while Germany’s DAX index was 100 points higher at 12,621 according to IG.

In Asia, Chinese markets were slightly lower after Beijing’s growth rate for gross domestic product came in weaker than expected. The world’s second largest economy achieved GDP growth in the second quarter of 0.4% compared to a year ago, and lacked expectations as the economy struggled to shake off the impact of Covid control.

Analysts polled by Reuters had predicted growth of 1% in the second quarter.

This comes after a number of central banks raised interest rates this week to tackle rising inflation. The Bank of Canada surprised markets with a full percentage point rate hike, while central banks in South Korea, New Zealand, Singapore and the Philippines all took steps to tighten monetary policy.

The US Federal Reserve is also seen stepping up its monetary policy action following unexpectedly hot inflationary pressures.

On Wall Street, U.S. stock futures rose Friday morning after a disappointing start to the second-quarter earnings season.

Back in Europe, political uncertainty returned to Rome on Thursday after the country’s president rejected Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s offer to resign.

Draghi said he would resign as Italian leader after a political party in his ruling coalition refused to participate in a vote of confidence earlier in the day. Italian President Sergio Mattarella rejected Draghi’s resignation and asked him to speak to Parliament to get a clear picture of the political situation.

On the data front, a final reading of Italian inflation data for June is scheduled for release around 1 p.m. 9 London time.

– CNBC’s Evelyn Cheng contributed to this report.

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