European stocks closed mixed on Friday, pressured by weak corporate earnings, but finished the month with gains of around 8 percent.
Best month in 6 years
The pan-European STOXX 600 failed to hold onto any gains, closing down 0.1 percent. Nevertheless, the index posted strong gains for the month, closing up 8 percent, its best percentage gain since July 2009. The FTSEurofirst 300 Index also outperformed, up around 8.1 percent in October, also the largest monthly percentage gain in six years.
France's L'Oreal finished trade over 4.5 percent down, after posting a 3.7 percent like-for-like sales rise in the third quarter, disappointing investors.
In the U.K., banks and supermarkets led the FTSE index to close lower, down 0.5 percent. Royal Bank of Scotland, which is 73 percent owned by the British government, reported an operating loss in the third quarter of £842 million ($1.3 billion) and warned that litigation costs in the future could be "substantially greater" that expected. Shares closed 1 percent lower as a result.
Spanish bank BBVA record a third quarter net loss of 1.06 billion euros from a 601 million euro profit a year earlier, sending shares sharply lower at the close, down 3.5 percent.
Euro zone inflation
Investors also digested euro zone inflation data which kept the pressure on the European Central Bank to further ease monetary policy.
The euro zone crept out of negative inflation in October, according to a flash estimate on Friday from Eurostat. It comes after prices in the 19-country euro area fell 0.1 percent in September.
Eurostat also reported that Europe's unemployment came in at 10.8 percent in September, down from 11.5 percent the year before. September 2015's figure is the lowest unemployment rate recorded in nearly four years.
Elsewhere in global markets, U.S. stocks traded in a range Friday, as investors focused on earnings and economic reports, while Asia shares closed mixed following the Bank of Japan's (BOJ) decision to stand pat on monetary policy.
TalkTalk jumps, Autos gets a boost
Elsewhere in earnings, Aerospace firm Airbus said it saw a 12 percent year-on-year rise in third-quarter core earnings and announced the buyback of 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion) of shares by mid-2016. Shares rose to close up 4.4 percent.
Sticking with French firms, BNP Paribas finished trade 1.8 percent higher after the French bank reported better-than-expected net income that rose 14.5 percent year-on-year in the third-quarter.
The STOXX 600 auto sector was one of the best performers of the day, boosted by Nokian Tyres, which finished over 16 percent higher, and Renault, up 5.2 percent. Nokian Tyres reported better-than-expected third quarter results, while Renault reported a 9.4 percent rise in revenues in the third quarter.
In other corporate news, British firm TalkTalk released an update about the recent cyber attack Friday, saying the extent of the data accessed is "significantly less than originally suspected." Shares in the telecommunications company jumped 4.8 percent.