© Reuters

By Scott Kanowsky

Investing.com — European markets hovered near the flatline on Monday, as investors look ahead to getting further hints of a potential interest rate hike path from the Federal Reserve this week.

As of 03:20 a.m. EST (0720 GMT), Europe’s index was only slightly higher by 0.02%. In France, the fell into the red following legislative elections in the country that saw President Emmanuel Macron lose his majority in the National Assembly.

With U.S. markets closed today in observance of the Juneteenth holiday, trading has been choppy throughout the Asian session. Markets have been trying to digest a string of major rate hike announcements from central banks around the world in a bid to quell soaring inflation, with concern rising that these actions may trigger a broader economic recession.

Later this week, Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell could deliver hawkish testimony to lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday and Thursday. The Fed moved to raise by a whopping 75 basis points at its latest meeting – its most since 1994. Over the weekend, Fed Governor Christopher Waller said he would back another hike of that size next month.

Meanwhile, ECB President Christine Lagarde is scheduled to address the European Parliament in Brussels later today, after the central bank unveiled plans last week to increase rates and develop a new tool to prevent a disorderly blowout in borrowing costs in weaker eurozone countries.

In corporate news, shares in EasyJet (LON:) dipped after the budget airline said it would slash more flights this summer in response to staff shortages and flight caps at London Gatwick and Amsterdam. Elsewhere, Associated British Foods (LON:) shares rose following a jump in third-quarter sales at its key Primark business.

 

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