European stocks are expected to open modestly higher Tuesday, following a mixed session in Asia, as the U.S. dollar continues to slide amid an expectation of slower interest rate hikes and potentially delayed fiscal stimulus.
Britain's FTSE 100 is likely to add 3 points to its Monday record close of 7,429.45 at the opening bell, according to financial bookmakers IG, as traders take advantage of a weaker sterling. Germany's DAX index and France's CAC-40 are also priced for small advances at the start of trading.
Asia stocks got a boost from weaker currency trading, as well, as a softer U.S. dollar helped the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index added 0.29% by 06:45 GMT to stay within touching distance of its 15-month high. Japan's Nikkei 225, however, slipped 0.34% by the end of the session to close at 19,455.88 points as a firmer yen held down export and financial stocks.
Much of the region's trading was dictated by the greenback, which softened to a near Feb. 7 low of 100.03 against a basket of six global currencies as investors re-set assumptions for the pace of rate increases in the world's biggest economy. A portion of that change came from a speech from Chicago Fed President Charles Evans, who suggested the central bank is likely to raise rate three more times this year in order to fulfil its employment and inflation mandate, disappointing dollar bulls who had been betting on four 2017 increases.
Global oil markets used both a weaker dollar and speculation that OPEC producers, along with Russia, could begin discussing an extension of output cuts after they expire later this spring to lift prices across the board. WTI futures for May delivery were marked at $49.06 by 06:45 GMT while Brent contracts for May delivery were seen 0.23% higher at $51.80 per barrel.
Wall Street ended an up-and-down session with mixed results as investors remained jittery over an investigation into the White House and another slump in crude oil.
The S&P 500 was down 0.20%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.04%, and the Nasdaq rose slightly, by 0.01%. The Nasdaq reached an all-time intraday high of 5,915 earlier in the session before backing off, finishing at 5,901.
FBI director James Comey confirmed on Monday that the intelligence agency was investigating the Russian government's involvement in the election and will also look into ties with the Trump campaign. Intelligence agencies previously confirmed that Russian hackers had been involved in efforts to favor a Donald Trump win. Comey noted that Russia "wanted to hurt our democracy, hurt [Clinton], help him."
U.S. equity futures are pointing to a modestly stronger open on Wall Street, with the Dow set to rise 30 points at the bell and the broader S&P 500 expected to gain 4 points.