PARIS (Alliance News) - The European markets are trading mixed on Tuesday, amid valuation concerns, as investors turned cautious after the previous session's rally. Geo-political tensions also impacted sentiment as leaders of Russia and Ukraine are meeting in Minsk, the capital city of Belarus, in a bid to resolve the crisis in Eastern Europe.
On a day of light economic news, data showed that the unemployment rate in Finland decreased more than expected in July. The jobless rate fell to 7% in July from 9.2% in June, while the projection was for a 7.6% drop.
In the UK, mortgage approvals declined unexpectedly in July from a 3-month high, data from British Bankers' Association revealed. The number of loans approved for house purchases fell to 42,792 from 43,180 in June.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is losing 0.14%, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major UK companies, is sliding 0.02%.
The German DAX is losing 0.21% and the French CAC 40 is sliding 0.03%. The UK'sFTSE 100, which opened after Monday's holiday, is gaining 0.26%. Switzerland's SMI also is in positive territory.
In Frankfurt, RWE is gaining 1.7% and E.ON is adding 0.7%.
Fresenius and Deutsche Telekom are gaining around 1% each.
Bucking the trend, Commerzbank is gaining 1.8% and Deutsche Bank is advancing moderately.
Meanwhile, steel maker Salzgitter is climbing close to 5% after UBS raised the stock to "Buy" from "Sell."
UBS raised Kloeckner to "Neutral" from "Sell." The stock is up 2%.
In Paris, GDF Suez is losing 2.4%. UBS reduced its rating on the stock to "Neutral" from "Buy."
Danone and Orange are moderately lower. Essilor International and Safran are losing around 0.6% each.
ArcelorMittal is gaining 2.4% on the CAC 40. UBS upgraded the stock to "Buy" from "Sell."
Veolia Environnement is gaining 2.3%. Publicis Groupe and Unibail-Rodamco are rising 1% each.
In London, WPP is rising 1.6%. The advertising giant reported first-half results.
RSA Insurance is gaining 2% and Associated British Foods is adding 1.9%.
Telecity Group, which announced the departure of its chief executive, is declining over 6%.
Antofagasta is declining close to 4% and Petrofac is dropping 2.1%. Both companies reported first-half results.
The Asian stocks turned in a mixed performance despite a record close on Wall Street overnight, as investors kept a close eye on geopolitical developments amid concerns about company valuations and differing levels of recovery in the US and Europe.
In the US, futures point to a slightly higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, the major averages rose about half a percent each, as investors cheered a wave of merger news and hints of more stimulus from the European Central Bank.
Crude for October delivery is gaining USD0.26 to USD93.61 per barrel, while gold is rising USD9.8 to USD1288.7 a troy ounce.