* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.9 pct, bounces back
* Airlines boosted by sharp drop in crude prices
* Industrials, exporters benefit from further drop in euro
* German market closed for holiday
By Blaise Robinson
PARIS, Oct 3 (Reuters) - European stocks regained some poise on Friday after the previous day’s sell-off, led by airlines buoyed by a sharp drop in oil prices while exporters such as Airbus got a lift from the euro’s renewed slide after strong U.S. jobs data.
Shares in British Airways owner International Airlines Group rose 4.9 percent and Air France-KLM added 3.6 percent, while easyJet, which upgraded its earnings forecast on Friday, surged 6.4 percent.
Brent crude oil futures fell below $92 a barrel on Friday as abundant supplies and a strong dollar continue to weigh on the commodity market.
Jet fuel, derived from crude, can account for anywhere between 20 and 50 percent of an airline’s operating costs, which means the recent sharp drop in prices could become a boon for the sector’s earnings.
Shares in industrials and exporters also featured among the top gainers on Friday, with planemaker Airbus rising 3.6 percent, as the euro slipped to a two-year low around $1.25 against the dollar after better-than-expected U.S. jobs figures.
The data showed U.S. non-farm payrolls rose by 248,000 last month and the jobless rate fell to 5.9 percent, the lowest since July 2008.
“These are pretty strong figures, especially the unemployment rate,” Saxo Bank trader Andrea Tueni said.
“It’s tempting to see this as ‘the glass half-full’: good news for the economy means good news for the market. But investors seem cautious because ultimately it could raise the chances to see the Fed raising rates earlier than what the market currently expects.”
The sharp drop in the euro - down 11 percent since early May - has sparked hopes of a boost to the region’s corporate earnings.
After proving a major headwind for exporters in the first part of the year, the slide in the single currency should give a lift of 3 to 6 percent to corporate earnings, according to analysts and fund managers.
For Airbus, one of Europe’s most dollar-sensitive companies, a 10-cent move in the euro against the dollar translates into a 1-billion-euro swing in profits at the operating level.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares ended 0.9 percent higher on Friday, at 1,347.14 points, after dropping 2.4 percent on Thursday.
UK’s FTSE 100 index added 1.3 percent and France’s CAC 40 gained 0.9 percent. Germany’s market was closed due to a public holiday.
Banking shares featured among the top gainers, with Italy’s Intesa SanPaolo up 2.9 percent and Spain’s Bankinter up 3 percent.
The STOXX 600 euro zone banking index had tumbled 4 percent on Thursday after the European Central Bank gave no new hints on the prospect of an imminent sovereign bond buying programme, leading some in the market to scale back bets on this happening.
Investors were also rattled by the lack of specific details about the ECB’s plan to buy asset-backed securities (ABS).
“Market participants are disappointed. There are still a lot of question marks on the ECB’s action plan,” said Judith Danan, head of sales trading at CMC Markets France.
“Beyond the T-LTROs (targeted longer-term refinancing operations) and the plan to buy ABS, the central bank doesn’t really seem ready to launch a quantitative easing programme, at least not in the short term.”
Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today’s European research round-up (Editing by Mark Heinrich)