European markets open lower; Hermes, Thales, Vodafone to report

Bourses in Europe open lower on Friday as investors digest comments from ECB President Mario Draghi and fresh corporate earnings.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was 0.12 percent lower with most sectors moving south.

The euro was near a two-year high after the European Central Bank Mario Draghi said that tapering will be discussed in the autumn. Most analysts foresee a tightening in policy next year.

Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund agreed on Thursday evening to give $1.8 billion in loans to Greece, on the condition that Athens keeps reforming the country. The announcement might help Greece’s efforts to return to markets.

In the corporate world, Hermes, Thales, Samsung and Vodafone are due to report their latest earnings reports.

Philips Lighting, the world’s largest maker of lights, reported a better-than-expected increase in its second-quarter core earnings due to improvements at its LED and home lighting businesses.

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