Europe Markets

Europe shares close mostly lower; Greek hopes fade

Europe shares close mostly lower; Greek hopes fade

European equities closed flat to lower on Thursday, as hopes faded that a reforms-for-aid deal between Greece and its lenders was getting nearer.

The pan-European Euro Stoxx 600 Index closed around 0.6 percent lower, with all major bourses cooling off after a strong end to Wednesday's session.

The U.K.'s benchmark FTSE 100 index ended provisionally 0.1 percent higher, while the German DAX index was down 0.8 percent and the French CAC was 1.0 percent lower.

This came after European Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis poured cold water on reports that a Greek deal could be nearing, saying the two sides still had some way to go before any agreement could be drawn up, Reuters reported. German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble made similar comments to ARD Television, saying he was surprised by the upbeat tone from Greek officials.

Meanwhile, at the Group of Seven (G-7) meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs, Greece was on the agenda in discussions, as well as talks on how to revive global growth. The talks continue until Friday.

Adidas shares closed down around 1.1 percent on Thursday, with the company one of the main sponsors of FIFA, the body governing world soccer, which has been hit by a corruption scandal.

Read MoreWhy Qatari banks are worried about FIFA

In other stocks news, Sports Direct shares rocketed to end 4.2 percent higher, after the retailer lifted its profit outlook on Thursday morning.

Fellow U.K. retailer, Kingfisher, also rose, closing up around 2.2 percent, after reporting a rise in first-quarter sales.

However, at the bottom of benchmarks, Tate & Lyle closed around 2.4 percent lower, with its full-year results showing a fall in profits.

On the data front, growth numbers from the U.K. confirmed gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 0.3 percent for the the first quarter of 2015, compared to the period before. A euro zone economic sentiment index for May showed a reading of 103.8, which matched a revised number for April.

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