Markets

European markets close mixed after U.S. jobs report; BNP Paribas up 2.5%

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Key Points
  • Corporate earnings season continued to drive individual share price movement, with BNP Paribas, Sanofi, Intesa Sanpaolo and Thyssenkrupp all reporting before the bell on Friday.
  • The U.S. Labor Department reported that the U.S. added 49,000 jobs in January, while the unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, in the first employment report of the Biden administration.

LONDON — European stocks closed mixed Friday as investors looked to vaccine rollouts for hopes of normalization, while global markets flirted with record highs.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 finished flat in Europe, with banks climbing 1% to lead gains and telecoms falling 0.8%. For the week, the index closed up 3.45% aided by a week-long rally in Italian assets.

Corporate earnings season continued to drive individual share price movement, with BNP Paribas, Sanofi, Intesa Sanpaolo and Thyssenkrupp all reporting before the bell on Friday.

BNP Paribas posted a net income of 1.59 billion euros ($1.90 billion) for the fourth quarter of 2020, beating analyst expectations of 1.2 billion euros, according to Refinitiv. The French lender's shares added 2.5%.

Beazley shares jumped more than 14% after the British insurer voiced confidence in the outlook for 2021 despite swinging to a loss in 2020.

At the bottom of the European blue chip index, Finnish engineering firm Neste fell 6% after its fourth-quarter earnings report.

On Wall Street, U.S. stocks climbed on Friday, with the major averages trying to finish their best week since November.

The U.S. Labor Department reported that the U.S. added 49,000 jobs in January, while the unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, in the first employment report of the Biden administration.

Johnson & Johnson announced Thursday that it had requested authorization for emergency use of its single-dose Covid-19 vaccine from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and will apply to the European authorities within the next few weeks.

Meanwhile, the EU's drug regulator said Thursday that it was assessing data on therapeutic antibody treatments for some outpatients from U.S. drugmakers Regeneron and Eli Lilly.