In London, the FTSE was down 0.87% at 6,659.74, while the DAX was holding steady at 11,494.05 in Frankfurt. The CAC 40 was up 0.42% to 5,176.25 in Paris.
Metals and mining stocks were among the morning's worst performers in London, after a slew of disappointing economic data from key resources buyer China over the weekend.
The selloff was sparked by news of an unexpected 8.3% drop in Chinese exports in July and an 8.1% slump in imports, along with the biggest decline in Chinese producer prices in nearly six years.
In Athens, there was some optimism for a Greek international rescue deal by Tuesday, which should allow Greece to meet an Aug. 20 repayment deadline to the European Central Bank. The Athens Stock Exchange Composite Index was up 0.72% by around midday local time after paring earlier gains.
In London, Dixons Carphone (DSITF) dipped 1.25% after the company's shocking weekened announcement that its Carphone Warehouse business had been hit by a cyber attack. The company said it took immediate action to secure the systems and launched an investigation with a leading security expert to determine exactly what was affected. It said it has also introduced additional security measures to prevent further attacks.
Esure retreated 9.04% on disappointing half-year results. The insurer posted a 21.3% drop in underlying pretax profits, and a 20.4% decline in underlying earnings per share.
Among gainers, Meggitt (MEGGF) added 0.30% after the engineering firm announced an agreement to buy Cobham's (CBHMF) advanced composites business for $200 million in cash. The price amounts to 10 times 2016 estimated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, and includes facilities in San Diego, Calif., and Baltimore as well as two U.K. locations in the towns of Shepshed, Leicestershire, and Stevenage, Hertfordshire.
In Milan, Banco Popolare (BPSAY) rose 3.11% on better-than-expected second-quarter results posted late Friday by Italy's fourth-largest lender.
Asian stocks were mixed. In China, the Shanghai Composite Index jumped 4.92% amid speculation of a government-fueled merger boom in state-owned industries, as reported by Friday in the South China Morning Post.
Among the benchmark indices, the Hang Seng erased 0.13% to 24, 531.12 in Hong Kong, while the Nikkei added 0.41% to 20,808.69 in Tokyo.