10 things you need to know before European markets open

Good morning! Here’s what you need to know.

Bad loans in China hit a 10-year high. Non-performing loans at Chinese banks jumped by 51% to 1.27 trillion yuan last year, taking them back to levels not seen since June 2006.

The ECB is preparing to loosen policy further. The European Central Bank is ready to ease policy in March if the recent financial market turmoil or the long-term impact of low energy prices threatens to keep inflation persistently low, its president Mario Draghi said on Monday.

UK inflation figures are coming. Britain’s consumer price index, producer price index and retail price index are published at 9:30 a.m. UK time (4:30 a.m. ET).

Europe’s leader is hopeful for a deal with Britain. European Council leader Donald Tusk said he hoped the UK and other EU nations would agree on a deal to keep Britain in the European Union at a meeting in Brussels at the end of the week.

The Czech Republic is taking a hard line on refugees. About two out of three Czechs oppose taking in refugees from war zones, according to an opinion poll published on Monday, reflecting growing anti-migrant sentiment in a country that has taken a tough stance on migrants and refugees.

IKEA faces tax action. European Union state aid regulators will examine a report by a group of EU lawmakers accusing Swedish furniture retailer IKEA of avoiding paying at least 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion) in taxes over a six-year period.

China is stepping up its anti-corruption efforts. China has set up a hotline for people to report accusations of graft and discipline problems in its military, the Defence Ministry said on Monday, in the latest effort to combat widespread corruption in the ranks.

Spain could see fresh elections. Spain’s lower house of Parliament will begin the debate for its first confidence vote on the country’s new prime minister March 2, the speaker of the lower house Patxi Lopez said.

Ukraine is in turmoil. A Ukrainian deputy general prosecutor has resigned, saying he made the decision because of what he calls endemic corruption in the country’s judicial system and a lack of political will.

The Gameloft founders are raising the stakes. The founding family of Gameloft has raised its stake in the company as it seeks to fend off a “creeping takeover” of the video games maker. European media group Vivendi has been buying shares in Gameloft and peer Ubisoft.

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