European equities closed mixed on Thursday as investors eyed the continued rout in oil prices and other commodities.
Oil in focus
Oil prices remained under pressure due to oversupply in the market, with Brent and U.S. WTI were both trading lower around $40 and $37 respectively. OPEC published its latest monthly oil market report on Thursday, in which its forecast said that the supply of oil from countries outside of the OPEC will contract next year as world oil demand rises.
Glencore up 7%
Miners were again in focus as metal prices continued to come under pressure. After Anglo American announced a massive round of job cuts, Glencore increased its debt reduction target and further cut its capital expenditure.
In other news, Hans Dieter Potsch, the chairman of the supervisory board of scandal-hit carmaker Volkswagen, said the company was making "good progress" with its emissions investigation and vowed to identify the people responsible. Shares wobbled during trade, but shot up in later trade, to close higher by 1.14 percent.
Sports Direct tanks on earnings
On the earnings front, retailer Sports Direct reported a 7.6 percent rise in underlying earnings for the first half of the year and said trading since the end of the period has been in line with management's expectations. Shares, however, tumbled to close over 10 percent lower.
Investec shares tanked over 11 percent after Standard & Poor's reduced its outlook on the company from "stable" to "negative". And Insurance firm Old Mutual tanked over 10 percent after RBC cut its price target for the stock.
SNB, BoE maintain rates
Elsewhere, central banks are also in focus Thursday. The Swiss National Bank (SNB) left its benchmark interest rate unchanged on Thursday, adding that the Swiss franc remains "significantly overvalued."
The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee voted 8-1 in favor of maintaining the key U.K. interest rate at 0.5 percent and said it anticipated that the low oil price would keep inflation low.