European stocks closed lower on Friday and were down more than 1 per cent this week as investors weighed risks after the European Central Bank (ECB) signalled a slowdown of pandemic-era bond purchases.
Stocks found support after the ECB stressed it was not about to turn off the money taps despite projecting higher growth and inflation for the euro zone.
News of a call between Chinese leader Xi Jinping and US president Joe Biden offered some relief to battered Asian stocks, particularly tech companies that have come under heightened regulatory scrutiny in Beijing.
The Iseq fell 0.85 per cent as most of its key stocks recorded losses. AIB shed 1.6 per cent and Bank of Ireland 0.4 per cent to close at €2.33 and just below €4.99 respectively.
Building materials group CRH fell 1.5 per cent to €42.99, while Ryanair sank more than 2 per cent to finish at €15.49 in a week in which it ended talks with Boeing over a Max 10 order.
Packaging group Smurfit Kappa contained its loss to 0.3 per cent, closing at €48.57, while builder Cairn Homes dropped 0.7 per cent to about €1.14 the day after it published positive interim results.
Glenveagh Properties was among the risers, adding 1.1 per cent to €1.13, while Dalata Hotel Group nudged up 0.3 per cent to €3.55. Insulation maker Kingspan added 0.8 per cent to €96.
The Ftse 100 ended 0.1 per cent higher, but posted its worst weekly performance since mid-August as data showed the pace of domestic economic recovery stalled in July against the backdrop of a surge in Covid-19 cases and supply chain disruptions.
The blue-chip index ended 0.1 per cent up, with miners leading the gains, while the domestically focused mid-cap Ftse 250 index dropped 0.3 per cent, weighed by real estate and financial stocks.
Mining stocks Rio Tinto, Glencore and Anglo American were up 1.2-1.8 per cent.
Aer Lingus and British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG) slipped 4.1 per cent after analysts at Credit Suisse cut its price target on the stock. Burberry added 0.5 per cent after its French rival LVMH was upgraded by analysts at HSBC.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index fell 0.3 per cent and declined for four of five sessions this week as worries persisted about a slowing global economic recovery.
Tech stocks in Europe rose 0.7 per cent, while luxury stocks got a boost as France's LVMH rose 0.8 per cent after HSBC recommended buying the stock. China-exposed miners were the biggest gainers on the day, up 1.1 per cent.
Fresenius Medical Care dropped 4.8 per cent after analysts at JP Morgan downgraded the stock to "underweight". French energy storage group Rubis fell 8 per cent and was the biggest decliner on the Stoxx 600 after it flagged difficulties in its Caribbean business.
BioNTech rose 2.5 per cent after two executives at the German biotech firm told Der Spiegel the company was set to request approval across the globe for use of its Covid-19 vaccine in children as young as five.
Wall Street's main indexes were subdued in early trading on Friday as signs of higher inflation and a drop in Apple shares following an unfavourable court ruling offset expectations of an easing in US-China tensions.
Apple fell 2.7 per cent following a court ruling in Fortnite creator Epic Games' antitrust lawsuit that struck down some of the iPhone maker's restrictions on how developers can collect payments in apps. Apple shares were set for their worst single-day fall since May this year.
US-listed Chinese ecommerce companies Alibaba and JD.com, music streaming company Tencent Music and electric car maker Nio all gained.