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European stocks dip before key US data, G20 conclusion

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

European stock markets fell on Friday as investors awaited the publication of more vital data in the United States, and the end of the G20 summit in Russia.

In late morning deals, London's FTSE 100 index fell 0.15 percent to 6,522.75 points, Frankfurt's DAX 30 shed 0.28 percent to 8,211.18 points and the CAC 40 in Paris dipped 0.09 percent to 4,003.19.

The European single currency firmed to $1.3129 from $1.3117 late on Thursday. The dollar fell to 99.65 yen from 100.12 yen.

On the London Bullion Market, gold prices fell to $1,369.93 an ounce from $1,385.

"The G20 summit continues in Russia, with Syria dominating the discussion and many countries sitting on the fence, but many investors are waiting for the non-farm payrolls (NFP) report from US," said Gekko Markets analyst Anita Paluch.

World leaders at the G20 summit have failed to bridge their bitter divisions over US plans for military action against the Syrian regime, with Washington signalling that it has given up on securing Russia's support at the UN on the crisis. The summit concludes at about 1200 GMT.

Meanwhile, the vital NFP economic data could help determine whether the Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) begins scaling back its $85 billion-a-month bond purchases this month.

While a strong figure would provide more evidence the world's top economy is on the road to recovery, it would also signal the beginning of the end of the Fed's year-old bond-buying scheme.

"Traditionally, this is a very important report, always taking the centre stage, but this one is the last one before the FOMC meeting in September and carries more weight because of the taper talk," added Paluch.

"And taper of the $85 billion monthly purchases of mortgage and Treasury bonds depends heavily on the situation in the labour market, since the Evans rule was introduced in December.

"Hence no big moves ahead of the news, but (trade) could be very volatile later on."

The British pound fell slightly against the euro and dollar after news of flat industrial production and a worsening trade deficit in July.

Sterling dipped to 84.31 pence against a euro, and slid to $1.5575 from $1.5586 on Thursday.

Asian equities mostly rose on Friday as traders awaited the NFP data.

The gains came after another positive lead from Wall Street, with economists expecting a healthy rise in employment will give the US Federal Reserve another reason to begin winding down its huge stimulus programme.

But stocks in Tokyo tumbled 1.45 percent, with speculation that the capital would fail in its bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games adding to downward pressure.

Hong Kong rose 0.10 percent and Shanghai climbed 0.83 percent.

Profit-taking also capped buying at the end of a strong week for global markets fuelled by healthy manufacturing data from China, Europe and the United States.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130906/european-stocks-dip-key-us-data-g20-conclusion