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European markets seen slightly lower ahead of Fed meeting; third Brexit vote blocked

European stocks are set to open slightly lower Tuesday morning, as investors monitored heightened Brexit uncertainty and awaited the Federal Reserve‘s latest monetary policy meeting.

The FTSE 100 is seen 12 points lower at 7,287, the CAC is expected to open down around 10 points at 5,402, while the DAX is also poised to start 10 points lower at 11,647, according to IG.

Market focus is largely attuned to central bank expectations, with the Fed due to kick-off its two-day policy meeting later in the session.

With global economic growth appearing to slow, most market participants anticipate the U.S. central bank to strike a dovish tone on Tuesday. The Federal Reserve is also expected to lower its interest rate forecasts — or “dot plots” — to show little or no further tightening in 2019.

In Asia, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares, excluding Japan, was little changed from the previous session.

Back in Europe, fresh Brexit uncertainty dragged U.K. sterling to as low as $1.3183 overnight. It comes after the speaker of Parliament ruled that British Prime Minister Theresa May could not put her divorce deal to a new vote unless it was re-submitted in a substantially different form.

May only has two days to secure approval for her deal to leave the European Union if she wants to meet with the bloc’s leaders on Thursday with something to offer them in exchange for more time.

On the data front, U.K. unemployment rate figures for January will be published at around 9:30 a.m. London time. Annualized euro area wage growth data for the final three months of 2018 and a March reading of German ZEW economic sentiment will follow at around 10:00 a.m.

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