LONDON (Reuters) - European shares ended the week lower after jobs data from the United States triggered selling pressure as investors try to gauge the timing of the next U.S. rate hike.
While there was an initially positive market reaction to the data, which showed the U.S. economy had created fewer jobs than expected last month, a fall in the unemployment rate to a 7-1/2-year low meant the release did not decisively quash expectations of an interest rate hike as early as this month.
"Sentiment is quite nervous...I think more and more investors blame central banks for not acting in the current environment to bring stabilisation," said Ingo Speich, portfolio manager at Union Investment in Frankfurt.
"Currently there is no positive bottom-up or fundamental signal that is strong enough to keep markets up."
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index closed down 2.5 percent at 1,392.63 points at 1406 GMT, after rising 2.4 percent the previous day when the European Central Bank delivered a dovish message from its first meeting after weeks of market turmoil.
Energy and mining shares were among the worst performing sectors, falling 4 and 5 percent respectively.
Germany's benchmark DAX share index fell 2.7 percent after data showed industrial orders had fallen more than expected in July on lower foreign demand.
Britain's second-largest clothing retailer, Next, and electrical goods and mobile phone retailer Dixons Carphone fell 3 percent and 4.3 percent respectively after Exane BNP Paribas cut its target price for both the stocks.
Lufthansa rose 5 percent after the chief executive told Reuters in an interview he was confident the airline would achieve its profit target this year thanks to strong business in July and August and a turnaround in its short-haul European business.
Neopost, the French mail and shipping group, surged 10.1 percent after confirming its 2015 outlook on the back of higher sales in the second quarter.
European bourses in 2015: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2015: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today's European research round-up [RCH/EUROPE]
Editing by Kevin Liffey