PARIS (Alliance News) - The European markets are poised for a higher open on Friday, tracking positive cues from Asia and Wall Street overnight, amid reassuring comments from Russian President Vladimir Putin on the Ukraine crisis.
During a visit to the Crimea region, Putin claimed that Russia will do everything possible to end the conflict between the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists.
"We will do all we can to end the conflict as soon as possible, to stop the bloodshed in Ukraine," Putin said in a meeting with members of State Duma political party groups.
The DAX futures are gaining 18 points, the CAC 40 futures are rising 14 points and the FTSE 100 futures are advancing 17.50 points. The Swiss Market Index futures are gaining 17 points.
The European markets closed higher on Thursday, despite some weak economic data from the region. The DAX and the CAC 40 gained around 0.3% each, while the FTSE 100 added 0.4%.
On the economic front, U.K 's Office for National Statistics will release its second estimate GDP figures and its index of services report at 4:30 am ET. GDP is expected to grow 3.1% year-over-year and 0.8% quarter-over-quarter in the second quarter, confirming the flash estimate.
On the corporate front, Telecom Italia Group confirmed that it is considering to make an offer for Vivendi's Brazilian telecom business, TIM Participacoes SA, with the Vivendi-owned GVT.
Infrastructure group Balfour Beatty PLC. reaffirmed its rejection of the proposal from Carillion PLC., stating that the announcement made by Carillon on August 14 remains unchanged from that rejected on August 11.
Swedish apparel retailer Hennes & Mauritz AB reported that its total sales in July 2014, including VAT, advanced by 17% year-over-year in local currencies.
In Asia/Pacific, markets are in positive territory, tracking cues from Wall Street where the major averages closed higher overnight amid slightly easing worries about the situation in Ukraine following Russian President Vladmir Putin's remarks.
The US futures indicate a mixed open on Wall Street. In the previous session, the major averages continued to move higher going into the close, ending the session at their best levels of the day. The Dow, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 advanced 0.4% each.
Among commodities, crude for September delivery is rising USD0.03 to USD95.61 per barrel, while gold is falling USD1.0 to USD1314.7 a troy ounce.