Investors in Europe woke up to the latest gross domestic product (GDP) data from China on Friday. China's first-quarter GDP expanded by 6.7 percent on-year, in line with forecasts that growth had moderately eased. For the December quarter, the reading came in at 6.8 percent.
Markets in Asia ended mixed, with markets having a broadly muted reaction to the data. China's Shanghai composite and the Shenzhen composite both closed slightly lower. In the U.S., markets traded roughly flat around Europe's close, as oil weighed on sentiment.
Investors worldwide are now shifting their focus to Doha, where OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers are expected to meet this Sunday. The talks will focus on a freeze in production levels in a bid to support prices but most analysts are skeptical that a workable deal can be reached.
Brent crude and U.S. crude saw prices drop over 2.5 percent—at $42.78 and $40.31 respectively—at Europe's Friday close as doubts over the meeting started to escalate. Oil and gas stocks fell on the price decline, with Tullow Oil at the bottom of benchmarks, off 5.6 percent.