Investing.com - European stock markets are expected to open largely unchanged Monday, consolidating after last week’s strength as investors look to central bank speakers for guidance.
Central bank speakers in focus
European equities posted strong gains last week, powered by a series of solid earnings and a perceived dovish tilt from central banks in the wake of several policy-setting meetings.
There are plenty of ECB speakers scheduled this week, including President Christine Lagarde on Friday, and investors will study their comments closely for indications of future monetary policies.
Futures are currently implying an 80% probability the central bank will begin easing as soon as April as the region heads towards a recession.
There are also at least nine Fed speakers due this week, including two appearances by Chair Jerome Powell - the second of which on Thursday includes a Q&A session.
Ryanair forecasts a record annual profit
In corporate news, Ryanair (IR:RYA) forecast a record annual profit earlier Monday and promised to pay investors a regular dividend for the first time after fares soared during its key summer season.
The carrier, Europe’s largest by passenger numbers, said traffic was up 11% to 105 million in the six months to the end of September, with fares 24% higher than last year.
German factory orders rose in September
Turning to economic data, German factory orders rose 0.2% on the month in September, a stronger result than the fall of 1.0% expected, but still a sharp drop from the revised 1.9% gain seen in August.
There are a number of PMI releases due throughout Europe Monday, which should provide indications of the strength of economic activity in the region last month.
Crude rises on prospect of tighter supply
Oil prices rose Monday, rebounding after last week’s hefty losses, with traders encouraged by the prospect of tighter supplies, while keeping an eye on events in the Middle East.
Major suppliers Saudi Arabia and Russia confirmed over the weekend that they will maintain their ongoing supply reductions until the end of the year, heralding tighter oil markets.
Both benchmarks slumped about 6% last week as the geopolitical risk premium faded, with the Israel-Hamas war failing, so far, to escalate into a wider conflict in the Middle East.