UK Retail Sales Ease, Public Spending Falls
The just released UK retail sales report has revealed an ease in domestic sales for January as consumers in the nation tightened their spending budgets last month, despite growth in real income remaining buoyed. Separately, another report showed a fall in UK’s public debt last month, boosting hopes that the nation might be able to meet its fiscal targets.
In the Euro zone, the preliminary composite PMI reading rose better than anticipated for February, led by a rise in services sector activity, strengthening hopes that recovery in the region’s private sector is regaining momentum ahead of the ECB’s quantitative easing programme beginning next month. Across the Atlantic, the preliminary Markit manufacturing PMI gauge scheduled later today is likely to keep investors interested in the latter half of the trading session.