European stocks were relatively stable on Friday morning, as global markets watch for falling commodity prices while continuing to digest a hawkish central US Federal Reserve.
Stocks in Asia-Pacific were also mixed on Friday as investors monitored market movements in the commodities sector after a recent drop in prices triggered by a strengthening US dollar.
International benchmark Brent crude futures slipped 0.73% to $ 72.55 a barrel, adding to Thursday’s losses. US crude futures fell 0.55% to $ 70.65 a barrel.
On the data front, UK retail sales in May fell 1.4% month-on-month, official statistics revealed on Friday, falling short of the 1.6% expansion expected by economists in a Reuters poll. The Office for National Statistics said that food stores contributed the most to the surprise drop. The pound fell to a new six-week low following the decline.
In terms of individual stock price movement, UK car dealership Inchcape climbed 4% early in the session to lead the Stoxx 600 after raising its earnings outlook for 2021. At the bottom of the index, the insurer- Dutch Aegon life fell 3.7%.
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