European stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Thursday, with stocks poised to extend the previous session's sell-off, as stronger-than-expected growth and inflation data from China fuelled tightening concerns.
European shares ended lower after hitting 28-month highs on Wednesday, as disappointing figures from Goldman Sachs and a fall in U.S. housing starts hurt sentiment and prompted some investors to
Sovereign debt concerns remained in focus on Wednesday, when CNBC learned that officials in Germany's finance ministry are working on contingency plans to handle the fallout if Greece defaults or needs to restructure its debt.
Portugal raised €750 million($1 billion) in a Treasury bill sale on Wednesday, with a lower interest rate and high demand reflecting an easing in tension about the country's financial woes.
Spain plans to issue a 10-year benchmark syndicated bond on Thursday, replacing a planned auction of existing 10 and 15-year bonds.
The European Central Bank will publish its monthly bulletin on Thursday, along with a raft of economic data out of several European countries.
Germany is set to release its December producer price index, while Italy releases industrial turnover and orders for November. Dutch consumer confidence and unemployment figures for January are also due on Thursday.
Finally, investors will also have to digest Irish inflation data and UK car production numbers for December.