Most European benchmarks were down Thursday after the latest batch of earnings reports appeared to open the floodgates of disappointment for investors.

Madrid and Frankfurt were left nursing the steepest losses while London bucked the continental trend thanks to a weaker sterling, brought about by the Bank of England having pushed sterling lower in its latest interest rate announcement and inflation report.

The FTSE 100 rose 0.02% to close at 7,386 in London while the blue chip DAX index dropped 0.36% before settling at 12,711. In Paris the CAC 40 shed 0.32% to close at 5,383.

Over in southern Europe, the IBEX dropped more than 1% in Madrid while the FTSE MIB slipped by just more than a quarter of a percent in Milan.

London's relative strength was noteworthy in the context of steep losses for several of the FTSE 100 index's major constituents. 

In individual stocks, Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HKMPY) stock was pummeled for a second session on the trot after the drugmaker announced that its generic Advair Diskus product has been knocked back by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The company said it has received a complete response letter from the FDA and that, as a result, it now sees a "low likelihood of approval this year".

Hikma stock dropped by more than 8% in a straight line, to trade down at an intraday low of 1,773 pence, before partially paring losses. Vectura (VEGPF) , which is a partner in the Advair Diskus program, saw its shares fall by nearly 10% for the session.

BT Group (BT) , britain's largest broadband and telecoms company, saw its stock fall by nearly 5% after it said 2016 earnings fell due to an accounting scandal in its Italian division, which has cost it more than £500 million to date. It also announced jobs cuts and other restructuring measures as part of an effort to reduce costs.

The embattled Centrica (CPYYY) , the owner of British Gas, saw its stock fall more than 5% after coming under fire from analysts at JPMorgan who downgraded it from overweight to underweight, before slashing their price target by around 30%.

Centrica and other energy stocks have been left out in the cold this week since the U.K. government pledged to cap energy prices if it is re elected in June's general election.

Prime Minister Theresa May pledged to take as much as £100 ($129) off of the annual energy bill paid by households in a clampdown on what the government has described as a "broken" market. The move places Centrica investors at risk of their third dividend cut in just as many years.

In Italy, Generali (ARZGY) stock fell after details of a strategy revamp in its asset management division failed to take the sting out of a poorer than expected set of first-quarter results. The shares were down nearly 3% by the close.

In Paris Safran (SAFRY) saw its stock fall more than 2%, to the bottom of the CAC, as investors responded to news of Boeing having suspended flights of some planes due to concerns over the new LEAP engine.

In Frankfurt, Prosieben (PBSFY) biggest faller in Germany, down more than 5%, while Deutsche Post (DPSGY) also posted a heavy loss, after dropping more than 3%.

German broadcaster Prosieben warned of a more moderate outlook for advertising revenue during the remainder of the year while Deutsche Post investors overlooked a broadly in-line set of results over concerns about letter volumes.

Lufthansa (DLAKY) also posted a loss, amid broad weakness in airline, although the shares had gained strongly Wednesday on the back of strong passenger volume data.