The Paris Bourse is set to open lower on Thursday, in a climate conducive to profit-taking following the downturn in the bond market, while awaiting further US growth figures for the first quarter.

At around 8:15 a.m., the CAC 40 index futures contract - expiring in June - dropped 24.5 points to 7913.5 points, pointing to an opening close to 7900 points.

The optimism that recently drove equity markets to record levels has given way to nervousness in the face of the sharp rise in government bond yields.

Yesterday's announcement of a rebound in inflation in Germany has accelerated the upward movement in long rates, which yesterday experienced one of their worst sessions of the year.

"This has led to greater volatility across all asset classes - the VIX has reached a three-week high - and is penalizing the momentum on the equity markets somewhat", admits Christopher Dembik, Investment Strategy Advisor at Pictet AM

"For the moment, it's not worrying. We'll just have to keep an eye on the phenomenon", the analyst moderates.

This morning, German ten-year Bund yields are stabilizing, hovering below yesterday's annual peaks at around 2.69%, while the yield on the US Bund is back at around 4.62%.

Nervous about the rise in bond yields, investors are likely to take a wait-and-see attitude between now and the publication of the second estimate of US first-quarter GDP, due out at 2:30pm.

Economists are betting on a slight downward revision of GDP growth, which had come in at 1.6% in the first estimate for the first three months of the year.

But the markets' short-term direction should be determined above all by tomorrow's release of US PCE inflation data, the Federal Reserve's preferred price indicator.

Lower-than-expected figures could weigh on the dollar and bond yields, prompting traders to revise their expectations regarding future rate cuts", warns George Pavel, manager at

The New York Stock Exchange ended on a distinctly bearish note on Wednesday, with the Dow Jones index lining up a fifth down session in seven.

In the energy market, crude oil prices continued to decline as we await US crude inventories figures, due to be released in the afternoon.

The June contract for US light crude oil fell by 0.2% to $79 a barrel, while Brent dropped 0.3% to below $83.4.

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