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Europe stocks finish mostly lower as oil decline weighs

European stocks snap 4-session losing streak

European stocks ended mostly lower on Wednesday, as a renewed decline in oil prices put a dampener on sentiment, while investors looked ahead to the Federal Reserve's meeting next week.

The pan-European STOXX 600 came off its highs to close 0.09 percent down. Sectors closed in different directions.

The U.K.'s FTSE 100 finished 0.12 percent up, while Germany's DAX ended 0.08 percent down. France's CAC extended its losses, closing down 0.39 percent.

European Markets: FTSE, GDAXI, FCHI, IBEX

Uncertainty over central banks' next moves continued to worry investors on Wednesday, with the main focus being on the Fed and its meeting next week. However, chances of the central bank raising interest rates appear slim.

"Once again we're left to absorb all the information we've had over the last couple of weeks, the result of which appears to be that the Fed will hold off on raising interest rates next week," Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA, said in a note Wednesday.

"While a number of policymakers would clearly be comfortable with raising rates at this point, I think there are enough that want to see more evidence of higher inflation to prevent a hike next week. Investors are clearly in agreement on this with markets pricing in only a 15 percent chance of a hike," he added.

Oil prices continued to shake up sentiment on Wednesday, with crude futures fluctuated between gains and losses. At the close, prices were lower with Brent at $46.24 and U.S. WTI at $44.00.

Oil prices jumped before falling back sharply after the Energy Information Administration reported that weekly US. crude inventories fell by 559,000 barrels to a total of 510.8 million barrels.

The moves influenced trade on Wall Street, where stocks were mostly higher around Europe's close.

Meanwhile, European basic resources stocks outperformed on the back of a rise in metal prices. Glencore, Antofagasta and Anglo American all closed sharply higher.

Bayer-Monsanto deal; luxury eyed

Chemicals and healthcare group Bayer announced plans to acquire U.S. seeds company Monsanto with a takeover offer of around $66 billion. An agreement has been signed for Bayer to pay $128 per share, up from its previous offer. Bayer shares rose on the news, but pared to close only slightly higher.

A number of luxury stocks were lower after earnings. France's Hermes said it was going to scrap annual sales growth forecasts as of 2017, due to the uncertain trading environment. This sent shares in the luxury goods maker to close almost 9 percent down.

Have central banks lost control?

Richemont said operating profit for the six months ending September 30 is expected to be around 45 percent lower than in the same period last year. Shares slipped almost 4 percent, while LVMH, Burberry and a number of other luxury stocks also fell.

Meanwhile, Ocado extended its losses from Tuesday, sinking to close 7.55 percent down on Wednesday after Exane BNP Paribas cut its rating on the stock to "underperform".

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