European stocks closed higher Friday afternoon after a key U.S. jobs report showed employment growing steadily and the jobless rate hitting a 50-year low, easing fears for the health of the world’s largest economy.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 closed 0.6% following the data release. Utilities, tech, chemicals and healthcare stocks all rose more than 1% while autos remained a stubborn 0.7% below the flatline.
The FTSE 100 clawed back some of its weekly losses, gaining 1% by the the time of close. A corresponding weakening of sterling versus the dollar aided the FTSE basket.