European stock markets were mixed in early trade on Friday, with rising bond yields weighing on the German market in particular following the European Central Bank’s hawkish turn on Thursday.
By 4:05 AM ET (0905 GMT), the DAX in Germany traded 0.6% lower, while the CAC 40 in France climbed 0.1% and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 rose 0.5%.
The European Central Bank decided to keep interest rates unchanged at its policy-setting meeting on Thursday, as widely expected, but ECB President Christine Lagarde declined to repeat previous guidance that an interest rate increase this year was extremely unlikely, leaving the door open to a 2022 hike.
The ECB had been seen as among the most dovish of the world’s leading central banks, but this change in stance has seen German bond yields rise Friday, with 5-Year notes trading above zero for the first time in over three years.
Influential investment bank Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) now predicts two interest rate hikes this year, in September and December.
This has tended to overshadow a larger than expected rise in German industrial orders in December, up 2.8% on the month, after a revised increase of 3.6% in November – numbers that suggest the German economy’s contraction at the end of last year won’t be extended into 2022.
Eurozone retail sales, later in the session, are expected to more vividly illustrate the impact of the Omicron surge late last year, dropping 0.5% on the month.
However, the day’s major economic data release comes in the U.S., with the widely watched monthly official jobs report due at 8:30 AM ET (1330 GMT). Nonfarm payrolls are expected to rise by 150,000 in January, a slowdown from the previous month’s near 200,000 gain. The risk is for a downward surprise, after ADP reported a shock drop in private-sector employment in the month. However, the relationship between the two surveys has been badly stretched by the pandemic.
Overnight, stellar results from online retail giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) had set a positive tone, pushing U.S. equity futures sharply higher.
Back in Europe, Carlsberg (CSE:CARLb) stock rose 2.2% after the Danish brewer posted fourth-quarter sales above expectations, while Sanofi (PA:SASY) stock 0.4% after the French drugmaker posted a hefty rise in its 2021 earnings, and predicted even stronger earnings next year after losing ground in the Covid-19 vaccine race.
The FTSE MIB climbed down by 0.82% to 26,867.20. In the cash markets, the DAX Germany was trading down by 0.59% to 15,277.65. CAC 40 in France rose by 0.76% to 7,009.37 while the FTSE 100 in the U.K. was up by 0.55% to 7,569.35 ,at the time of writing.