European stocks are seen lower Friday morning as geopolitical concerns take center stage.
Investors are set to take cues from Asian markets where equities fell on concerns of another hydrogen bomb test. North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho told reporters in New York overnight the country could perform another nuclear test in the Pacific Ocean of an “unprecedented scale.”
Back in Europe, all eyes will be on Prime Minister Theresa May, who is set to deliver a key speech at 2:15 p.m. London time on the country’s negotiations with the European Union. Media reports earlier this week suggested that May will say the U.K. is ready to pay 20 billion euros ($23.92 billion) for a two-year transition period after Brexit. The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said Thursday that “time is of the essence” and six months have gone by since the U.K. triggered the exit process.
In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged Germans to head to the polls on Sunday as concerns over a low turnout emerge.
In the corporate world, Lufthansa is set to get a large part of the insolvent AirBerlin, Reuters reported citing sources. The U.K.’s easyJet is also still in the race for getting some assets from AirBerlin, which filed for insolvency in August.
In terms of data, there will be French flash manufacturing PMIs (Purchasing Managers’ Index) at 8 a.m. London time and U.S. manufacturing and services PMIs at 2.45 p.m. London time. There’s also a joint OPEC and Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee taking place at 9 a.m. London time.
European stocks seen lower on geopolitics; Brexit speech from UK PM on the radar