In Paris, the CAC 40 was off 13.78 points, or 0.43%, to 3,216.76 as Alcatel and LVMH lost ground.
Germany's DAX index added eased 1.42 points, or 0.04%, at 3,324.85 as Schroeder government tries to push through some welfare reforms.
In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index closed up 8.4 points, or 0.08%, at 10,318.44 after the market rebounded in late afternoon, and fresh buying from public pension money was rumored. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index added 3.63 points, or 0.03%, to finish at 11,290.15.
Canada's benchmark S&P/TSX slid 80.29 points, or 1.07%, to 7,433.08.