bounced back in the morning session after Wednesday's shake-out, with sentiment lifted by hopes that China may announce more measures to restore its economy's mojo.
Stock markets in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo registered gains on speculation that the People's Bank of China injected a net 365bn yuan this week into the Chinese banking system to boost markets ahead of next week's Golden Week holidays.
Even the Spanish stock market made headway this morning, ahead of the country's austerity budget, which is due to be unveiled today. The Madrid government is expected to target €39bn worth of spending cutbacks, tax increases and structural reforms,
Meanwhile, Spain's regional government in Castilla-La Mancha is expected to request around €800m euros from the country's regional bailout fund in order to meet its debt obligations, Spanish state news agency EFE reported on Thursday, citing regional government sources.
The requested amount is around 10% of the region's outstanding debt and would allow it to keep up with its maturing debt and interest payments.
Swedish fashion retailer H&M disappointed the market with its fiscal third quarter sales figures, as it warned of continuing tough conditions in the rag trade.
The group posted sales growth of 0.9% to 3.62bn Swedish kronas (SEK) for its fiscal third quarter, falling short of the SEK4.05bn expected by the market.
French lender Credit Agricole was wanted after Chief Executive Officer Jean-Paul Chifflet indicated it may only be a matter of weeks before its gets shot of its Emporiki Greek unit.
Car makers were mostly in reverse after German manufacturer Volkswagen (VW) suggested some of its competitors might go out of business unless they receive some sort of financial support, as the European car market deteriorates.
VW and sector peer Daimler were among the few DAX constituent stocks to decline in the morning session, as was tyre maker Continental. In France, car maker Renault was the worst performing blue-chip while Peugeot also declined. Italy's champion, Fiat, was also friendless.
In the bond markets, German bunds are little changed.
DAX - Risers
Bayer € 68.45 +1.41%
RWE € 35.58 +1.27%
Deutsche Bank € 31.03 +1.17%
DAX - Fallers
Volkswagen € 144.10 -1.57%
Continental € 75.36 -0.84%
Daimler € 37.97 -0.48%
CAC 40 - Risers
Credit Agricole (ACA) € 5.45 +2.91%
Lafarge (LG) € 42.44 +2.41%
Legrand SA (LR) € 29.45 +2.31%
Schneider Electric (SU) € 47.90 +2.18%
Societe Generale (GLE) € 22.80 +1.67%
Sanofi (SAN) € 68.70 +1.63%
Bouygues (EN) € 19.40 +1.54%
France Telecom (FTE) € 9.75 +1.36%
Alstom (ALO) € 28.00 +1.17%
L'Oreal (OR) € 98.06 +1.13%
CAC 40 - Fallers
Renault (RNO) € 36.88 -1.02%
LVMH (MC) € 120.25 -0.70%
PPR (PP) € 120.30 -0.66%
Unibail-Rodamco (UL) € 159.95 -0.53%
Peugeot (UG) € 6.02 -0.27%
Technip (TEC) € 86.66 -0.23%
Michelin (ML) € 60.79 -0.21%
Total (FP) € 39.54 -0.18%
Accor (AC) € 26.65 -0.15%