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European equity markets opened at a seven-month low Friday, Reuters data shows, as investors digest comments out of the U.S. and global sentiment stutters.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index was 1% lower in afternoon trading, with most sectors in negative territory. Mining stocks saw the biggest drop with a 2.4% decline, followed by travel and leisure, which fell 1.9%.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell acknowledged recent signs of cooling inflation but said Thursday that the central bank would be “resolute” in its commitment to its 2% mandate. Powell did not lay out a specific policy path but also gave no indication that a further interest rate hike was on the cards.
The Fed opted to hold interest rates steady at its last meeting in September, but did suggest there would be one more hike before the end of the year.
Investors will also be keeping an eye on a summit happening between U.S. and European Union institutions Friday, where leaders will meet in Washington to discuss trade relations.
U.S. stock futures dipped Friday morning as traders focused on a recent run higher in the 10-year Treasury yield, while Asia-Pacific markets were all lower Friday, extending losses from Thursday’s broad sell-off.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index closed 1.16% lower Thursday, its lowest close since March 15, according to LSEG data.