UK Markets open in 4 hrs 31 mins

LIVE MARKETS-Trade tensions at centre of investor worries

* Stock futures fall sharply

* Weak Japan export data, report of stalled Huawei progress and weak earnings hurt

* SAP down as much as 6.6% in early Frankfurt trade Welcome to the home for real-time coverage of European equity markets brought to you by Reuters stocks reporters and anchored today by Josephine Mason. Reach her on Messenger to share your thoughts on market moves: josephine.mason.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net


TRADE TENSIONS AT CENTRE OF INVESTOR WORRIES (0700 GMT)

Weak Japanese export data, disappointing corporate results from U.S. and European heavyweights like SAP and Netflix and a report of stalled progress on Huawei talks are taking their toll this morning, sending European stock futures to their lowest in almost three weeks.

Germany equity futures are down as much as 1%, with SAP shares falling almost 7% in early Frankfurt trade after Europe's most valuable tech company's quarterly revenue and adjusted operating profit came in below expectations.

It's dragging other software stocks Software with it. Weaker oil prices are likely to pressure London's FTSE.

The mood on the market has taken a decisive turn for the worse.

Aside from Novartis, which lifted its guidance, investors don't appear to be impressed with earnings this morning, punishing Richemont and Givaudan.

A drop in Swiss watch exports is also taking the shine off the luxury sector which has had a stellar run following Burberry and Swatch results earlier this week.

Swiss industrial equipment maker Bobst shares are down as much at 9% in early deals after its profit warning, while Swedish car maker Volvo reported better-than-expected quarterly operating profits but launched a cost cutting plan as pricing pressure and the impact of tariffs from the Sino-U.S. trade war dent profitability.

That will compound worries about a slowdown in global manufacturing and damage from global trade conflicts, following below-consensus numbers from U.S. rail freight company CSX overnight.

Elsewhere, British online fashion retailer ASOS has warned on profit for the third time in eight months, blaming operational issues as it overhauls its warehouses in the United States and Europe. Its shares are seen down as much as 20%.


Here are some UK headlines:

Britain's easyJet hires Ryanair's operations chief

Bramson bids goodbye to Electra, Sherborne's Welker to join board

Royal Mail affirms FY targets, sees first quarter in line with view

SSE customer numbers dip, sticks to FY forecast

Britain's ASOS blames warehouse issues for latest profit alert

BRIEF-Stonegate Pub To Buy EI Group For Enterprise Value Of 2.97 Bln Stg

BRIEF-Anglo American Says Q2 Production Up 2%


(Josephine Mason)

******


RISK OFF IN EUROPE AS STOCK FUTURES FALL SHARPLY (0621 GMT)

Oof, the mood in Europe has taken a decisive turn for the worse this morning.

Investors are pulling cash out of riskier assets like equities this morning and seeking safety in government bonds, spooked by a slew of bad news from a drop in Japanese export data, a report of stalled progress on Huawei talks to bleak corporate numbers which are deepening concerns about damage from trade conflicts on the global economy.

European stock futures have opened at their weakest in nearly three weeks, with trade-sensitive DAX futures leading the charge lower, falling as much as 1.1% in early deals. SAP shares are down as much as 6.6% in early Frankfurt trade after its results, adding to the pressure on the German bourse.



(Josephine Mason)

*****


ON OUR RADAR: SAP, VOLVO AND RICHEMONT (0602 GMT)

Plenty of earnings news to digest this morning.

SAP's shares are down more than 3% in pre-market after telling investors they will have to wait til next year for a major improvement in margins as the German business software group reported a 21% decline in Q2 operating profit weighed down by one-off costs. The pressure on shares in Europe's most valuable tech company is likely to cast a pall over the broader DAX.

Swedish car maker Volvo reported better-than-expected quarterly operating profits but has launched a cost cutting plan as pricing pressure and the impact of tariffs from the Sino-U.S. trade war dent profitability.

That's compounding weak sentiment in the auto sector struggling with the trade conflict, hefty bills to develop electric and driverless cars and an overall downturn in demand.

Luxury goods will remain in focus with Richemont delivering a 9% rise in quarterly revenue as strong sales in Asia helped offset sluggish European business and protests in Hong Kong. That follows results from Swatch and Burberry this week which have electrified the companies' shares and the wider sector.

Novartis has lifted full-year sales and profit targets, helped by innovative medicine sales and as the Swiss drugmaker's slimmed-down Sandoz generics unit saw accelerating revenue in markets outside the United States.

In dealmaking, EssilorLuxottica is eyeing a stake in Dutch optical retailer GrandVision - the French eyewear group has proposed to buy HAL Group's 76.72% stake in GrandVision for 28 euros per share, a premium of about 22% to GrandVision's close on Wednesday.


Early headlines:

Volvo Cars launches cost cutting measures as trade war dents profit again

SAP says big margin gains to wait till 2020

Telia Q2 core profit just above forecast

Givaudan confirms 2020 guidance, H1 net profit up 2.3%

Eni files fraud complaint, rejigs trading arm over oil tanker fiasco

Nordea to review financial targets after Q2 profits drop

Wirecard deal with AUTO1 first fruit of SoftBank alliance

EssilorLuxottica seeks majority stake in Dutch eyewear firm GrandVision

Ubisoft posts Q1 net bookings beat, sticks to outlook

Novartis raises 2019 guidance, helped by Sandoz generics unit

Italian banks ready to avert another Carige funding failure - sources

French rail infrastructure group Alstom's Q1 sales rise

Remy Cointreau eyes Q2 acceleration after Q1 sales decline

Activist fund Amber Capital demands strategy review at French utility Suez

China growth helps Richemont offset sales weakness in Europe


(Josephine Mason)

*****


FRESH TRADE JITTERS TAKING THEIR TOLL IN EUROPE (0514 GMT)

Continued jitters over the U.S.-China trade dispute, coupled with some corporate warnings of slowing demand, are expected to hurt European stocks again today.

Taking their lead from weaker Wall Street and Asian markets overnight, IG financial spreadbetters expect London's FTSE to open 25 points lower at 7,510, Frankfurt's DAX to open 101 points lower at 12,240, and Paris' CAC to open 30 points lower at 5,542.

In the U.S., CSX shares tumbled 10.3%, their biggest one-day drop in more than a decade, after the rail freight company posted lower-than-expected quarterly profit and cut its full-year revenue forecast. Ongoing trade tensions have contributed to a decline in truck and rail freight volumes in the first half of 2019.

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book, a compendium of anecdotes from U.S. businesses, also pointed to trade-related pressures on transportation and manufacturing companies.

On the trade front, a WSJ report suggests that Huawei is a stumbling block to even getting talks restarted, while Japan's exports fell yet again in June, as manufacturers' confidence crumbled to a three-year low this month, as a Sino-U.S. tariff row, slowing China growth and rising trade protectionism took their toll on the world's third-biggest economy.


(Josephine Mason)

*****

(Reporting by Danilo Masoni, Helen Reid, Josephine Mason and Thyagaraju Adinarayan)