European stock markets trimmed last week's gains to close lower on Monday, off the back of weak Chinese data and tensions in Ukraine.
Data showing a record euro zone trade surplus in January helped the euro rise against the dollar for the first time in three days.
Gold settled lower on Monday as lingering fears that US interest rates could rise in early 2015 prompted bullion investors to cash in gains.
Sterling firmed against a weaker euro on Tuesday after European monetary policy makers signaled possible monetary easing to avoid deflation.
The euro was hurt by signs that growth was slowing in the euro zone's largest economy, Germany.
U.S. stock index futures ticked higher on Monday, ahead of the publication of flash manufacturing PMI (Purchasing Managers' Index) data.
European markets closed higher on Friday, capping off a week which saw investors absorb U.S. data and brush aside Ukraine concerns.
Gold settled modestly higher on physical buying as the dollar firmed after the U.S. Fed hinted at an interest rate hike in the first half of 2015.
The dollar steadied against major currencies on Thursday after being jerked higher overnight by a Federal Reserve message that a rate hike would be sooner than expected.
Crude notched slim gains, trapped between China's weak data and ongoing turmoil in Ukraine and the Middle East.
U.S. stocks rose on Tuesday after Vladimir Putin said Russia was not looking to divide Ukraine.
European stocks closed slightly higher on Thursday, despite concerns about the unwinding of ultra-easy monetary policy in the U.S.
Asian stocks rose on Monday after weak Chinese data raised hopes of fresh monetary stimulus.
U.S. crude tumbled, as builds in domestic stockpiles and a strong dollar outweighed worries over tougher U.S. sanctions on Russia.
U.S. stock index futures indicated that Wall Street looked set to maintain the gains posted on Thursday.
The dollar rose against the yen and euro on Wednesday, following the Federal Reserve's announcement it will further unwind monetary stimulus.
Gold settled lower in the wake of a suggestion by Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen that rates could rise sooner than expected.
Brent crude sat near a six-week trough, while U.S. crude rose ahead of the contract's expiry.
Stocks finished firmly in the red Wednesday after Fed Chair Janet Yellen suggested interest rate hikes would happen about six months after quantitative easing ends.
Asian stocks declined on Thursday after Fed Chair Janet Yellen suggested interest rate hikes could happen sooner than expected.
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