Most German stocks rose, with the benchmark DAX Index heading for a weekly advance, as investors awaited a report that may show U.S. economic growth accelerated in the final quarter of 2010.
Porsche SE and Bayerische Motoren Werke AG both gained at more than 2 percent after Goldman Sachs Group Inc. recommended the stocks. Deutsche Bank AG and Commerzbank AG followed European banking shares higher.
The DAX rose 0.2 percent to 7,170.10 at 1:10 p.m. in Frankfurt, heading for a weekly advance of 1.5 percent. The measure has gained 3.7 percent this year as reports suggested the global economy is recovering and investors bet that Europe’s leaders will increase their efforts to contain the region’s debt crisis. The broader HDAX Index added 0.3 percent today.
“The U.S. real gross domestic product data points to a growing economy,” said Robert Halver, head of research at Baader Bank AG in Frankfurt. “We still have wonderful liquidity. In the mid term, the DAX could reach 7,500.”
The U.S. economy probably grew at a faster pace in the fourth quarter, driven by the biggest gain in consumer spending in four years and rising exports, a Bloomberg News survey of economists shows. U.S. GDP rose at a 3.5 percent annual pace, up from a 2.6 percent rate in the third quarter, according to the median estimate of 85 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. The data is due at 8:30 a.m. in Washington.
U.S. Consumer Confidence
A second U.S. report may show that consumer confidence dropped in January. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s final sentiment index for this month, due at 9:55 a.m., is predicted to fall to 73.3 from 74.5 at the end of December, according to economists surveyed by Bloomberg.
Federal Reserve officials said this week that the improving U.S. economy won’t derail their plan to cut unemployment by pumping $600 billion into the financial system.
Porsche, the maker of the 911 sports car, rose 2.3 percent to 69.68 euros as Goldman Sachs upgraded the stock to “buy” from “neutral.” BMW gained 2.6 percent to 58.82 euros after Goldman Sachs added the world’s biggest maker of luxury cars to its “conviction buy” list.
Leoni AG climbed 3.2 percent to 32.79 euros after Germany’s biggest maker of automotive electrical cables was raised to “neutral” from “sell” at Goldman Sachs.
Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank, Germany’s biggest banks, increased 0.9 percent to 5.61 euros and 0.8 percent to 43.96 euros, respectively. European banking shares were among the best performers in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index today.
MAN SE, Europe’s third-largest maker of commercial vehicles, declined for the first time in four days, losing 1.5 percent to 86.79 euros.