European markets set to fall as U.S. election and coronavirus concerns weigh

  • Global coronavirus cases rose by a single-day record of half a million on Thursday.
  • Investors will be watching key economic data from the euro zone Friday, with flash third-quarter GDP growth estimates due at 10 a.m. London time.

LONDON — European markets are set to open lower Friday as jitters over the upcoming U.S. election and tightening coronavirus restrictions across the continent weigh on sentiment.

Britain's FTSE 100 is seen around 62 points lower at 5,520, Germany's DAX is set to fall by around 198 points to 11,400 and France's CAC 40 is expected to drop by around 70 points to 4,500, according to IG data.

Global coronavirus cases rose by a single-day record of half a million on Thursday, and the European Union now plans to finance the transfer of Covid-19 patients across borders within the bloc in order to avoid overburdening of hospitals as the virus surges across the continent.

American biotech firm Moderna said Thursday it is prepping for the global launch of its potential coronavirus vaccine.

European stocks are set for a weaker handover from Asia-Pacific, where markets suffered a third straight session of declines overnight as shares of Apple suppliers led the tech sector lower. The U.S. tech giant beat earnings expectations on Thursday but failed to offer any guidance for the fourth quarter, leaving investors uncertain as to the sales performance of the new iPhone 12.

Wall Street bounced on Thursday after stronger-than-expected economic data out of the U.S., with third-quarter GDP (gross domestic product) soaring 33.1% as $3 trillion worth of pandemic relief triggered a spike in consumer spending.

Back in Europe, the European Central Bank on Thursday maintained its current monetary policy position but suggested it could take further action in December to stave off the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, possibly eyeing an expansion to its bond buying program.

Investors will be watching key economic data from the euro zone Friday, with flash third-quarter GDP growth estimates due at 10 a.m. London time along with October's inflation rates and September's unemployment figures.

Corporate earnings Friday come from British Airways parent IAG, Air France-KLM and Total among others.

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