April Jobs Report Hoists EU Shares to 5-Year High

European shares closed at a five-year high on Friday after non-farm payrolls data from the U.S. came in better-than-expected.


U.S. employers added 165,000 jobs in April, according to the Labor Department, while the unemployment rate fell to a four-year low of 7.5 percent.

Economists in a Reuters poll had expected a reading of 145,000, and unemployment to hold steady at 7.6 percent. In March, non-farm payrolls came in at a disappointing 88,000.

(Read More: Back in Business: Jobs Picture Brightens in April)

Global markets reacted to the U.S. job numbers, with the dollar jumping against the euro and the yen. Oil prices rallied, while gold, often viewed as a safe haven, slid to near $1,460 an ounce. Treasury prices also declined.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 provisionally closed 0.9 percent higher on the day at 1,217.51, its highest close since June 2008. The index ended 1.8 percent up on the week, with an earlier boost coming from the European Central Bank's decision to cut interest rates.

(Read More: ECB's Nowotny: Talk of Negative Rates Overblown)

In Brussels, the European Commission published its spring economic forecasts for GDP on Friday. Germany's economy will regain momentum this year and next, it said, but Cyprus will contract by 8.7 percent in 2013 and 3.9 percent in 2014.

(Read More: Forecasts Reveal Bleak Picture for Euro Zone)