Europe Markets

Europe closes higher despite US jobs weakness

Europe closes higher despite US jobs

European equities pared losses to trade higher on Friday, after official jobs numbers from the U.S. came in way below expectations.

The pan-European STOXX 600 pared losses to close up around 0.5 percent on the day, but 0.4 percent lower on the week.

London's FTSE 100 index also reversed losses, closing provisionally up 0.9 percent on the day and 0.3 percent on the week.

The French CAC ended provisionally up 0.7 percent on the day and the Germany's DAX was up 0.4 percent.

The big news for global equity markets on Friday was the disappointing non-farm payrolls data from the U.S. The country created 142,000 jobs in September, way below the 200,000-plus expected, bringing into question whether an interest rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve is still on the cards this year. The unemployment rate remained at 5.1 percent.

U.S. stocks traded sharply lower on Friday on the news, before halving losses and leading European stocks in their wake.

"The data were as weak and as fragile as it can be and it has thrashed all the expectations for the U.S. rate hike not, only for October, but the odds for December are also gone much lower," Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Ava Trade, said in a note.

Read MoreJob creation misses big in September

Volkswagen down; Glencore recovers

What jobs report means to Fed

It was another challenging day for scandal-hit carmaker Volkswagen, which closed down 3.7 percent on the day. Shares slipped after Credit Suisse slashed its price target for the stock and rated it "underperform." The bank said the emissions scandal could cost Volkswagen up to 78 billion euros ($87 billion).

Meanwhile, shares of Glencore, which tanked 29 percent on Monday over debt concerns, continued to recover on Friday, closing up 4.4 percent on the day. The mining giant has attempted to reassure investors with debt-cutting plans and reports have emerged that Singapore's sovereign wealth fund is interested in buying a stake in the Glencore's agricultural business.

Oil prices suffered after the U.S. jobs report was released, with Brent down at just over $47 a barrel, and U.S. crude trading at a little over $44 per barrel. However, most European energy companies closed in the green, with strong performers including SBM Offshore, which ended the day more than 3 percent higher.

Credit-checking firm Experian announced Thursday that one of its business units had been hacked, potentially exposing the personal information of about 15 million users in the U.S., including some T-Mobile users. London-listed Experian shares closed down around 3.8 percent, while T-Mobile shares traded down 2.1 percent.

What to watch

Week ahead 5th Oct

Investors await the results of Sunday's national election in Portugal, to see whether the incumbent government that implemented widespread austerity measures as part of Portugal's financial bailout is reelected.