European Equity Benchmarks Close Mixed

The broad-based major European indices closed mixed in Friday’s trading session, with the U.K. and French markets moving lower while the German exchanged edged higher. In economic news, Eurozone economic growth hit a six-year high in April, according to the Markit Flash Eurozone Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). Job creation also rose to the highest level in almost a decade. The Markit Eurozone PMI rose to 56.7 in April, according to the preliminary estimate (based on approximately 85% of final replies). Up from 56.4 in March, the latest reading was the highest since April 2011.

“The eurozone economy has enjoyed a strong start to the second quarter,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit. “Robust rates of expansion are being seen in both manufacturing and services. The survey’s price measures remain elevated at the highest for around six years and suggest that we will see renewed upward pressure on consumer prices in coming months.”