- World Bank downgrades global forecast
- UK jobless rate declines
- ECB Mersche suggests "simple and transparent" ABS
FTSE 100: -0.52%
CAC 40: -0.73%
FTSE MIB: -0.97%
IBEX 35: -0.70%
Stoxx 600: -0.50%
European stocks were in the red after the World Bank downgraded its forecast for global economic growth.
The World Bank sees the global economy expanding 2.8% this year, down from a January prediction of 3.2%. The organisation projected slower growth for the US, Russia, China, Brazil and India. It left forecasts for world growth in 2015 unchanged at 3.4%.
Meanwhile, a report showed UK employers added 345,000 jobs in the three months to April, compared to 283,000 the previous quarter. Analysts had expected 270,000 jobs.
The unemployment rate fell to 6.6% in the three-month period from 6.8% previously, better than the 6.7% that was forecast by analysts. It marked the lowest point in five years.
Jobless claims dropped 27,400 in May following a fall of 28,400 a month earlier. Economists had pencilled in a 25,000 decline.
However, average weekly earnings rose by 0.7% in in the three months to April, missing the 1.2% estimate and less than the 1.7% the prior period.
"Although employment is continuing to grow very rapidly, there still appears to be enough slack in the jobs market to prevent pay growth from picking up," Capital Economics noted.
European Central Bank (ECB) board member Yves Mersch on Wednesday said the monetary authority may buy "simple and transparent" asset-backed securities (ABS) to achieve price stability.
ECB may buy "simple and transparent" ABS, says Mersch
Mersch said the monetary authority is working towards a more holistic approach to the regulatory treatment of ABS in Europe.
"There is a growing consensus that an instrument once seen as part of the problem could in fact be part of the solution," he said of talks about ABS in a speech entitled 'Next steps for European securitisation markets'.
Nutreco edged lower after saying it has halted a process to sell its Iberian compound feed and meat assets.
Airbus dropped after saying that Emirates pulled out of its planned purchase of 50 A350-900 planes and 20 of the larger -1000 variant.
Rolls-Royce Holdings declined after saying that the Emirates' cancellation reduces its order book by about £2.6bn.
Vallourec retreated as the French producer of steel pipes for the oil and gas industry said 2014 earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation will be about 10% lower than the previous year due to a fall in orders from Petroleo Brasileiro.
H&M advanced after the European retailer said revenue in May jumped 19% from a year earlier, exceeding analysts' estimates.
Inditex gained as the world's largest apparel retailer posted first-quarter net income that beat analysts' estimates.
The euro fell 0.12% to $1.3531.
Brent crude futures rose $0.364 to $109.920 per barrel, according to the ICE.