Europe open: Stocks start slightly higher, US-China trade talks in focus
Stocks were trading slightly higher across the Continent early on Tuesday ahead of a barrage of economic data due out later in the session on both side of the Atlantic, alongside corporate updates from several US heavyweights.
But above all, traders were keeping close tabs on any news around the ongoing US-China trade talks.
Overnight the US Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin, announced that top US officials would hold a second phone call with their Chinese counterparts and "to the extent we make significant progress, I think there's a good chance we'll go there later."
In the background meanwhile, a spokesman from China's Commerce ministry said on Tuesday that it would be misleading to suggest that Beijing needed to close a trade deal due to its slowing economy.
Commenting on the mood in markets, CMC Markets UK's David Madden said: "The trade dispute with the US is still ongoing. Dealers appear to have the attitude that no new negative news is positive.
"The US are deeply concerned about intellectual property protection, and for that reason the trade spat is likely to run for some time."
As of 0847 BST, the benchmark Stoxx 600 was flat at 387.74, while the Dax was edging up by 0.02% to 12,389.0, although the FTSE Mibtel was down by 0.33% at 22,107.76.
Euro/dollar meanwhile was drifting lower by 0.1% to 1.12457 and front month Brent crude oil futures were slipping by 0.1% to $66.43 a barrel.
On the economic calendar for Tuesday, the ZEW institute was scheduled to release its economic confidence gauge for Germany at 1000 BST, alongside international trade figures for May.
For later in the session meanwhile, readings on US industrial production and retail sales were set for release at 1415 BST and 1330 BST, respectively.
And quarterly reports were due before the opening bell from banking giants Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, followed by Netflix after the close of markets in New York.