Most German stocks rose as Libya declared a cease-fire and the Group of Seven nations agreed to sell the yen to ease concern that Japan will sink into recession following the March 11 earthquake.
K+S AG and BASF SE (BAS) advanced as analysts recommended their shares. SAP AG rose 1.6 percent as the world’s largest maker of business-management software proposed a 20 percent increase in its dividend. Adidas AG (ADS) declined after rival Nike Inc. reported profit that missed analysts’ estimates for the first time in 19 straight quarters.
The benchmark DAX Index (DAX) climbed 7.52, or 0.1 percent, to 6,664.4 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Frankfurt, trimming its weekly retreat to 4.5 percent. Six stocks rose for every five that fell. The gauge has tumbled 10 percent from this year’s high on Feb. 18 amid concern that higher oil prices prompted by Arab revolts would curb global economic growth and as a 9-magnitude earthquake, the biggest on record in Japan, struck the northeast part of the country. The broader HDAX Index added 0.2 percent today.
“It’s a positive sign for the market to hear the G-7, the Fed and the ECB say they’re sticking together with the Bank of Japan to help the Japanese economy,” said Heinz-Gerd Sonnenschein, an equity strategist at Deutsche Postbank AG in Bonn.
The G-7 jointly intervened in the foreign-exchange market for the first time in more than a decade, selling the Japanese currency as their markets opened. The strong yen had threatened to hamper Japan’s recovery from its worst postwar crisis by curtailing the earnings of its exporters.
Engineers in Japan worked into the night to restore power to two of the crippled reactors at the country’s damaged Fukushima Dai-Ichi power plant. Tokyo Electric Power Co. said it may finish reconnecting a power line to the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors by tomorrow morning. The electrical link would be used to restart pumps needed to protect fuel rods from overheating.
Stocks across Europe rose as Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa said the nation is ceasing all military action and will start talks with the opposition.
K+S rose 1.3 percent to 50.62 euros as Europe’s biggest potash producer was raised to “buy” from “hold” at Commerzbank AG, which said an improvement in potash volumes and a pickup in prices are not reflected in the stock’s current valuation.
BASF gained 1.7 percent to 56.25 euros as the world’s biggest chemicals company was raised to “overweight” from “neutral” at JPMorgan Chase & Co.
SAP, Deutsche Wohnen
SAP advanced 1.6 percent to 40.73 euros as it proposed a 20 percent increase in its annual dividend to 60 euro cents a share.
Adidas lost 1.4 percent to 43.22 euros. Net income rose to $1.08 a share in the fiscal third quarter ended Feb. 28, Nike said yesterday in a statement. That compared with the $1.12 average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
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