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European markets open cautiously higher ahead of US jobless claims data

European markets were marginally higher on Thursday, with the FTSE 100 (^FTSE) up just 0.05% in noon trade ahead of US jobless claims data this afternoon.

The DAX (^GDAXI) was 0.57% higher, while the CAC (^FCHI) is dipped 0.02%.

Healthcare and industrial companies were amongst the leaders on the FTSE as the UK vaccine rollout continues across the country, and AstraZeneca (AZN.L) said it hopes to be able to implement adapted vaccines “six to nine months” after the discovery of new coronavirus variants.

However, weakness among banks also weighed on the index.

AJ Bell said: “The FTSE 100 has now been treading water for more than a week as strong sterling weighs on the large number of index members which earn in different currencies. Markets across Europe and Asia were also static on Thursday with investors sitting on their hands, waiting for progress updates on the US stimulus plan and vaccination numbers.”

READ MORE: AstraZeneca hopes for adapted vaccine rollouts six months after new variants found Read from source….