European stocks head for higher open as omicron variant, bitcoin volatility watched

European stocks are expected to open higher on Monday, as investors watch developments around the omicron Covid variant and the volatility of the virtual currency.

The U.K.'s FTSE index is seen opening 56 points higher at 7,165, Germany's DAX 136 points higher at 15,259, France's CAC 40 up 72 points at 6,814 and Italy's FTSE MIB 199 points higher at 26,107 according to data from

European markets are set for a positive start to the trading week.

After the weekend's plunge in the price of the virtual currency, investors were watching it closely on Monday. Oil prices rose more than 2% in Asia trading hours after falling last week on Covid uncertainty and the plan to increase output in January.

Stock futures were higher even after a losing week on Wall Street as investors dumped equities due to concerns over the new omicron Covid variant and the Federal Reserve's move to tighten policy. The omicron coronaviruses variant has been detected in at least 15 U.S. states.

The price of cryptocurrencies fell throughout the weekend after the heavy selling in technology stocks. By Sunday, the world's largest coin had recovered some of its losses, but it still trades below the key $50,000 level.

German industrial orders in October, the euro zone sentix index for December and a first estimate of Greece's gross domestic product in the third quarter are some of the data releases in Europe on Monday.

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CNBC contributors contributed to the market report.