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FTSE, DAX, CAC Seen Lower After Moody’s Cut Outlook

The European markets are expected to open lower Tuesday morning after ratings agency Moody’s warned Monday evening it may cut the triple-A ratings of France, the United Kingdom and Austria.

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The FTSE 100 was called 6 points lower at the open, while the DAX was expected to open 11 points lower and the CAC 40 down 2 points.

The markets are expected to be dogged by fears about whether the Greek government can enact its latest austerity measures as unrest in Athens continued.

The Bank of Japan kept its policy rates unchanged Tuesday, but surprised the market by increasing its asset purchase program.

December euro zone industrial output numbers are expected to show a fall of 1.4 percent, which would be a poor forward indicator for the economic health of the region. UK inflation figures will also be reported later on Tuesday.

Companies reporting on Tuesday include Intercontinental Hotel Group and Actelion. Swedbank reported profit in line with expectations and said it would cut costs.

After the market close on Monday, Deutsche Boerse announced a special dividend and positive outlook for 2012 after taking a hit to profits from its failed attempt to buy NYSE Euronext.

L’Oreal said it expected increased revenue and profits again this year, in results announced after markets closed on Monday. Liliane Bettencourt, heiress of the family which founded the cosmetic goods company, will step down from its board of directors.