Cyclicals paced gains on Wednesday, alongside a bounce in food retailers with financials figuring prominently ahead of interest rate decisions from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday evening, as well as the Bank of England and European Central Bank the next day.
Miners found a bid at the start of the week on the back of positive commentary out of analysts at Citi and the release of stronger-than-expected bank lending and credit figures in China.
Cyclical areas of the market such as Industrial Metals and Home Construction were buoyed at the end of the week, buoyed by strong data out of China and corporate updates, respectively, alongside some of the more defensive segments as telecoms and pharma on the back of positive broker commentary.
Miners led to the downside on Tuesday amid broad-based selling in base metals which analysts attributed to weak investor sentiment towards demand out of China and higher LME copper stocks which fell to a two-month low.
Cigarettes and booze found a bid on Wednesday as investors sought refuge in those two defensive sectors on a risk-off day more generally for financial assets globally, amid gyrations in metals markets which some market commentary linked to wider uncertainty surrounding the outlook for China's economy but also US policy-making.
Construction stocks paced gains at the start of the week as the US Congress began going about reconcile competing tax cut package proposals which according to some analysts might result in the Trump administration's first major policy win as soon as this week.
Industrial transportation stocks led to the downside even as analysts at Deutsche Bank expressed a positive view on the outlook for the sector despite its 37% gain year-to-date at the pan-European level and 21. 5% outperformance versus the Stoxx 600.
Fixed line telecommunications was again in focus on Thursday, with renewed gains for BT Group helping to offset selling pressure on TalkTalk.
Retailers and banks drove gains at the middle of the week amid multiple reports that London and Brussels had reached a deal on the size of the UK's so-called Brexit bill, possibly paving the way for the next stage of negotiations - on trade - to begin.
Big Oil paced gains after Royal Dutch Shell said it would re-start its cash payouts from the fourth quarter of 2017.
Miners came under selling pressure at the start of the week as data revealing a modest slowdown in Chinese industrial profits called attention to the outlook for the country's property sector, a key driver for demand for multiple commodities around the world, including for copper and iron ore.
Defensive areas of the market performed best on Thursday, aside from utilities that is, as shares of Centrica crumbled.
The best performing areas of the market were a mix of cyclicals and defensives.
Higher yielding stocks were again the main beneficiaries of selling in cyclicals such as automobiles (GKN) or shares of oil companies.
Cyclicals were again at the bottom of the pile come Tuesday, amid another batch of weak data out of China and as some top strategists sounded a cautious note on the outlook for the current bull market in stocks.