Deutsche Bank fell to a six-month low as Standard & Poor’s said it may cut the lender’s credit rating. Allianz and Commerzbank AG both retreated more than 1.5 percent.
The DAX Index (DAX) lost 1.1 percent to 7,796.65 at 12:24 p.m. in Frankfurt, as five shares retreated for every one that advanced. The equity benchmark has dropped 1.4 percent so far this week, paring its gain in March to 0.8 percent. The broader HDAX Index fell 1 percent today.
The volume of shares changing hands in companies on the DAX was 13 percent greater than the average of the past 30 days, data compiled by Bloomberg showed.
U.S. stocks extended gains after the close of European trading, pushing the S&P 500 0.8 percent higher to close within two points of the record 1,565.15 that it reached in October 2007. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also climbed 0.8 percent, setting another record high.
A report at 10 a.m. New York time today may show contracts to purchase previously owned U.S. houses slipped 0.3 percent in February, according to the median forecast of 37 economists in a Bloomberg News survey. That follows a 4.5 percent increase in January, which was the fastest pace since last May.
German consumer confidence will stabilize in April, GfK SE said. The Nuremberg, Germany-based market researcher forecast today that its consumer-sentiment index, based on a survey of about 2,000 people, will remain at 5.9 next month, the level it reached in March. That matched the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of 30 economists.
Deutsche Bank slid 4 percent to 30.03 euros. S&P placed the lender’s A+ long-term rating on CreditWatch negative, according to a statement. Germany’s largest lender said last week that it has set aside additional money to cover costs linked to U.S. mortgage lawsuits and investigations by regulators. The bank lowered its reported profit for 2012 by about 400 million euros ($512 million) to 291 million euros on March 20.
Allianz slipped 2.8 percent to 105.30 euros after Europe’s biggest insurer agreed to buy Yapi Kredi Sigorta AS for 684 million euros, expanding its Turkish business to become the country’s largest insurer. The German company will purchase Yapi & Kredi Bankasi AS’s 93.9 percent stake in the business, and will conduct a mandatory takeover offer for the remaining shares shortly after completing the transaction.
Commerzbank dropped 1.8 percent to 1.14 euros, its lowest price in eight months. Shares in Germany’s second-biggest bank have declined 20 percent so far in March, their biggest slump since Nov. 2011.
SMA Solar Technology AG (S92) plunged 9.9 percent to 18.36 euros, its largest tumble in five months. Germany’s biggest solar company said that it may make a loss in 2013.
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