European Shares Set For Positive Open

European stocks are seen opening higher on Monday as an upbeat reading on China’s service sector activity boosted hopes of the world’s second largest economy continuing its economic recovery.

Elsewhere, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga is to join the race to succeed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, local media said, raising hopes he would extend the fiscal and monetary stimulus that defined Abe’s term in government.

Asian shares notched a 29-month high, with Japan’s Nikkei index climbing nearly 2 percent after Berkshire Hathaway Inc said it has acquired slightly more than 5 percent of the shares in five large Japanese companies.

Activity in China’s services sector expanded at a much faster pace in August, official data showed today, while manufacturing activity held steady despite weaker orders from export markets.

The dollar inched down and gold held near a two-week high while oil prices edged up despite signs of ample supplies.

Flash consumer price data from Germany is due later in the session, headlining a light day for the European economic news.

Across the Atlantic, a host of Federal Reserve officials are set to speak this week, kicking off with Vice Chair Richard Clarida later today.

As the week progresses, the Labor Department’s monthly jobs report will be in focus along with reports on manufacturing and service sector activity, factory orders, and the U.S. trade deficit.

U.S. stocks rose on Friday as investors continued to react to the Fed’s new monetary policy strategy and cheered upbeat economic data as well as Abbott Laboratories’ breakthrough announcement in the coronavirus testing market.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 0.6 percent and the S&P 500 added 0.7 percent to reach fresh record closing highs, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.6 percent to hit its best closing level in over six months.

European markets fell on Friday in reaction to surging coronavirus cases in Spain, France and Italy and weak economic data out of Germany and France.

The pan European Stoxx 600 slid half a percent. The German DAX dropped half a percent, France’s CAC 40 index eased 0.3 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 shed 0.6 percent.

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