European stocks were expected to open lower on Thursday tracking losses in the United States and in Asia after hitting a 1-week closing high on Wednesday, when they recovered from early losses following the lack of a resolution to the euro zone debt crisis at Tuesday's Franco-German summit.
London's FTSE is expected to open 59 points lower, Germany's DAX is called down by 83 points and the CAC 40 in Paris is predicted to open 42 points lower.
Wall Street was buoyed by positive earnings for US retail giants Target and Staples which improved investor sentiment early in the day when markets opened 1 percent higher, but by Wednesday's close the Dow and S&P were flat and the Nasdaq fell 0.47 percent.
Computer firm Dell announced disappointing top line growth and slashed its third quarter outlook, which caused tech firms to drag on the Nasdaq and in Asian trading on Thursday shares were lower, reflecting investor fears over the pace of a global economic recovery.
Efforts by the Swiss National Bank to stifle the strength of the Swiss franc fell short of a widely expected announcement to peg the currency to the euro on Wednesday, disappointing investors and causing the Swiss franc to climb against the single currency and the US dollar.
On the economics front, a flurry of data from the UK will be released at 9:30 including Bank of England capital issuance information for July, retail sales figures and mortgage lending figures.
Euro zone construction output data follows at 10:00 London time.
CNBC will be joined by Deutsche Bank chief economist Thomas Meyer at 8:30 to discuss the feasibility of issuing so-called euro bonds after the bank's CEO Josef Ackermann praised Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel in an interview with CNBC for taking "a step in the right direction" at Tuesday's meeting.
However, Ackermann expressed concerns over proposals to introduce a financial transaction tax across the all 27 member states of the EU.