European Shares Set to Bounce, Nokia Reports

European shares are expected to open higher on Thursday when Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia reports earnings after upbeat results on Wall Street offered investors some relief over companies' ability to weather a slowing economy.

Financial spreadbetters expect Britain's FTSE 100 to open up 27 to 32 points, or by as much as 0.5 percent; Germany's DAX to gain 52 to 67 points, or rise by as much as 1 percent, while France's CAC-40 is expected to rise between 60 to 75 points, marking a gain of up to 1.5 percent.

Nokia is expected to report a 46-percent rise in first-quarter earnings per share as strong demand for handsets in emerging economies offsets softer demand for more expensive mobile phone handsets in Europe.

Strong results from IBM on Wednesday and number one chipmaker Intel on Tuesday will ensure extra focus on the world's top cellphone maker later this session, a day after the European tech sector registered its largest one-day gain in two weeks.

In the United States, Bank of New York Mellon and Merrill Lynch report earnings, while on the macroeconomic side, the Philadephia Federal Reserve releases its April business activity index.

Crude oil reaching new peaks overnight after a drop in U.S. inventories should give the European oil and gas sector a lift, while the dollar falling to record lows against the euro could temper gains in export-sensitive sectors such as auto stocks.