Asian markets mainly firmer with the exception of Japan, following better than expected macro data out of the US. In corporate news, AIA, Asia's third largest insurer rose 3.5% after reporting better than expected results.

In Europe, futures are slightly firmer ahead of a key Italian bond auction later this morning. Italian 10 year bond yields traded at four month highs and equity markets were hit hard yesterday on concerns of uncertainty for the Eurozone following the Italian elections. Datawise we have Eurozone consumer confidence and UK GDP.

In the US, markets closed near session highs after better than expected consumer sentiment and housing data, along with Bernanke saying asset purchases are assisting the economy with inflationary pressures remaining subdued. Keep an eye out for durable goods and pending home sales data.

Philip Ball | Sales and Trading