European markets outside Germany opened lower on 26 November, with markets trading to the downside thereafter, ahead of the release of US housing market and consumer confidence data.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index opened 0.2% lower to 323.62.

Britain's FTSE 100 opened 0.1% lower.

France's CAC 40 opened 0.2% lower.

Germany's DAX 30 opened flat.

Spain's IBEX 35 was trading 0.17% lower after opening higher.

Italy's FTSE MIB was trading 0.78% lower after opening lower.

The US will put out consumer confidence data for the month of November, alongside housing starts and building permits data for the months of September and October later in the day.

Together they will throw more light on the health of the world's leading economy.

Market participants in the UK will also be tracking the Inflation Report Hearings at Westminster, expected to commence at 10:00 hrs GMT.

In company news, France's Remy Cointreau, the maker of Remy Martin cognac, was trading over 9% lower at 9:35 hrs GMT in Paris after the firm warned that its annual profit could be "substantially" lower owing to a lower demand for spirits in Europe and China.

Severn Trent was down 0.84% at 09:27 GMT in London after the British utility giant reported a near 6% slump in profits following higher operating costs due to the adoption of private drains and sewers.

Britain's second largest soft-drink maker Britvic's stock gained 5.1% in early London trade after the company reported an 18.8% increase in annual operating profit.

In Asia and the US

South Korea's Kospi finished 0.33% higher on 26 November. Australia's S&P/ASX finished 0.08% higher.

The Japanese Nikkei finished 0.67% lower, the Shanghai Composite finished 0.14% lower and Hong Kong's Hang Seng finished 0.01% lower.

Mumbai's BSE Sensex was trading 0.80% lower.

Earlier, Asian markets witnessed mixed trade following a lacklustre handover from Wall Street.

On Wall Street, most indices ended higher on 25 November as market players digested downbeat property market data.

The National Association of Realtors reported that signed contracts to buy existing homes fell for a fifth consecutive month in October.

The so-called pending home sales fell 0.6% month-on-month and dropped 1.6% on an annual basis in October.

The Dow finished 7.77 points higher or 0.1% at 16,072.54.

The Nasdaq closed 2.92 points higher or 0.1% at 3,994.57.

The S&P 500 ended 2.28 points lower or 0.1% at 1,802.48.