European stocks open to close, U.S. inflation data

U.S. CPI inflation tops expectations, sends markets tumbling

The U.S. consumer price index came in at 0.4% month-on-month in September, ahead of a Dow Jones consensus forecast of 0.3% and up from 0.1% in August.

On a 12-month basis, so-called headline inflation rose 8.2%, off its June peak of around 9% but still near its highest point since the early 1980s.

The hotter-than-expected print erodes market hopes that the Federal Reserve will pivot away from its aggressive interest rate hiking trajectory.

– Elliot Smith

Sterling jumps on reports of changes to UK tax cut policy

Sterling jumped against the U.S. dollar on Thursday following multiple reports that the British government is in talks to scrap parts of its unfunded package of tax cuts.

The pound was up 1.45% against the greenback by around 1:20 p.m. London time, trading at around $1.1265.

Belgium’s central bank chief would ‘not be surprised’ if ECB raises rates above 3%

Pierre Wunsch, governor of the National Bank of Belgium, says his bet is that rates would go above 2%.

German inflation confirmed at 10% in September

The German consumer price index rose by 10% year-on-year in September and 1.9% month-on-month, the country’s Federal Statistical Office said Thursday, confirming a preliminary reading.

EU-harmonized CPI inflation was 10.9% annually and 2.2% on the month, also in line with forecasts.

– Elliot Smith

Stocks on the move: Sweco down 7%, Taylor Wimpey down 5%

Swedish engineering consultancy Sweco fell more than 7% in early deals to the bottom of the Stoxx 600, while Taylor Wimpey dropped more than 5% to lead a broad sell-off for U.K. housebuilders.

European markets: Here are the opening calls

European markets are heading for a lower open on Thursday as investors around the world prepare themselves for the latest U.S. inflation data.

The U.K.’s FTSE index is expected to open 12 points lower at 6,812, the German DAX down 41 points at 12,150, the French CAC 23 points lower at 5,803 and Italy’s FTSE MIB 40 points lower at 20,324, according to data from IG.

The lower open in Europe comes amid mixed global sentiment ahead of the latest U.S. inflation reading. U.S. stock futures were up slightly overnight while markets in the Asia-Pacific region were mixed as investors await the data.

Dow Jones’ consensus estimates show the CPI rose 0.3% in September, up from 0.1% in August. That would bring inflation’s annual pace to 8.1% from 8.3%.

A rise in the consumer price index would also follow producer price data that came in higher than expected, data showed on Wednesday. The U.S.’ producer price index, a gauge of final-demand wholesale prices, was up 0.4% in September, more than the consensus estimate of a 0.2% increase, according to Dow Jones.

Markets digested minutes released Wednesday from the September Federal Reserve meeting which showed the central bank expected to keep hiking interest rates until it sees receding inflation.

One comment made some think the Fed might instead slow the rate hikes, if not roll them back, if financial markets tumult continued.

On the data front in Europe, Germany releases final inflation data for September.

— Holly Ellyatt

CNBC Pro: Goldman Sachs favors Tesla and one other big automaker even during an economic slowdown

Goldman Sachs raised its forecasts for electric car sales and said Tesla and another big automaker will benefit from the Inflation Reduction Act.

It comes at a time when the auto sector faces multiple headwinds in 2023, from rising interest rates to a fall in consumer demand.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Ganesh Rao

Fed minutes show central bank sees more rate increases, higher rates for longer

The Federal Reserve’s September meeting minutes, released Wednesday, show that the central bank expects to continue increasing interest rates and hold them higher until inflation shows signs of abating.

The minutes reflect policymaker’s discussions ahead of the last 0.75 percentage point increase, the third consecutive hike of that size delivered this year.

The central bank has been surprised with the persistent pace of inflation, but remain optimistic that rate hikes will help bring price increases back in check.

—Carmen Reinicke, Jeff Cox

CNBC Pro: Is Meta a stock to buy or dodge? A bull and a bear face off

These are tumultuous times for Meta, with investors fleeing this year as it struggles with headwinds.

The stock in late September plunged to trade at its lowest since January 2019 – and since then has dropped even more.

Do big investors consider the Facebook parent a buy, now that its shares are so cheap, or is it one to avoid?

CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” spoke to Paul Meeks of Independent Solutions Wealth Management, and Jake Dollarhide of Longbow Asset Management, as they face off in making their bull-and-bear case for Meta.

Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Weizhen Tan

Stocks close lower after choppy session

All three major averages closed lower Wednesday after whipsawing between gains and losses throughout the day.

The S&P 500 shed 0.33%, falling to 3,577.03, its lowest close since November 2020 and its sixth consecutive daily loss.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 28.34 points, or 0.10%, to close at 29,210.85. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.09% to close at 10,417.10.

—Carmen Reinicke

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