Friday 20 September 2019 11:41 am

FTSE 100: Stocks muted as investors keep eye on Brexit talks and US-China trade war

European markets have remained muted this morning as traders keep an eye on US-China relations and Brexit trade talks.

European stocks opened quietly this morning, with the FTSE 100 and Dax both starting slightly down.

Rolls Royce led the blue-chip fallers as shareholders wobbled over the company’s longer-than-expected problems with its Trent 1000 engines.

Read more: US law firms struggling to displace UK elite in FTSE boardroom

Exporter stocks also dipped as rising hopes of a Brexit deal boosted the pound.

Yet the rise in sterling gave property giants, which are particularly exposed to Brexti-related uncertainties, a lift in morning trading.

The FTSE 100 was broadly flat at 7,358, while the more domestically-focused FTSE 250 edged up 0.5 per cent.

The pound’s rise against the dollar hit 1.256 today following comments from European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker who suggested a deal between the EU and UK could be agreed

Juncker told Sky News: “I think we can have a deal. I am doing everything to have a deal because I don’t like the idea of a no-deal because I think this would have catastrophic consequences for at least one year.”

Read more: Sterling pushes past $1.25 as Juncker raises hopes of Brexit deal

He added: “Brexit will happen.”

The 64-year-old also revealed that Prime Minister Boris Johnson had sent him draft ideas outlining proposals for a new Brexit deal, though he had yet to look at them

Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay will meet EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier later today to “take stock” of the progress made, his department said.