Here is your round-up of the financial news from around the world:
1. European stocks open cautiously lower Thursday with currency markets in focus ahead of a key interest rate and inflation update later in the session from the Bank of England.
2. The BoE will publish its latest Quarterly Inflation Report Thursday immediately following its regular decision on interest rates while Germany's statistics office, Destatis, will publish its initial estimate of first quarter GDP for the region's largest economy on Friday.
3. Crude prices, however, were the focus for international trading after a bigger-than-expected 5.2 million barrel fall in U.S. oil supplies and renewed support for an extension of OPEC production cuts lifted benchmark levels by the most since December.
4. BT Group plc (BT) posted stronger-than-expected fourth quarter and full-year earnings Thursday but issued a cautious outlook, including lower shareholder payouts, as the legacy U.K. telecoms group attempts to put an accounting scandal in its Italian business behind it