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FXstreet.com (Barcelona) - The German DAX 30 (+0.64%), the French CAC 40 (+0.51%), the Italian FTSE IB (+0.36%) and the Spanish IBEX 35 (+0.17%) are edging higher on Monday as investors price in comments from China's financial regulatory authority head, as he said that the country may soon relax restrictions on foreign equities investment.

In Europe, the German Wholesale Price Index didn't change in December, neither monthly nor yearly, keeping its annualized figure at 3.2%, instead of rising to 3.3% as expected. The Italian Industrial Output contracted further, from an annualized -6.2% to -7.6% in November, as its monthly figure was a -1.0% drop. The EMU figure was also released and came in roughly as expected, as the upward revision to the October figures compensate November's disappointment of -0.3%, but clearly shows another negative month. "If the next two months continue to contract, that is likely to be enough for the ECB to revise their expectations slightly lower and bring easing to the table as we expect", wrote TD Securities analyst Richard Kelly,

ECB Chief Economist Praet will speak at 19:30 GMT and has already moved the market this morning. He defended ECB's current monetary policy as appropriate as policymakers stopped self-reinforcing downward spiral, despite the remaining downside risks to growth. Working those issues of "fear" are more important than cutting interest rates, he said.

Futures for the American S&P 500 and Dow Jones 30 are signaling a flat opening, while the Nasdaq 100 falls by -0.39% as Apple shares take a dive of -3.71% on the pre-market, trading at $520. Lower demand of iPhone 5 is making Apple cut LCD-display orders. The US session will have FOMC members speaking: Dudley, Lockhart and Bernanke.
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