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German Stocks Retreat; Siemens Drops as Earnings Miss Estimates

German stocks declined as Siemens AG reported earnings that missed estimates and a meeting of euro-area finance ministers finished without making progress on a debt-swap deal for Greece’s private creditors.

Siemens fell 1.3 percent after Europe’s largest engineering company said achieving its full-year goals has become harder as the sovereign-debt crisis weighs on the economy. Deutsche Bank AG and Commerzbank AG slid more than 1.5 percent. EON AG and RWE AG, Germany’s biggest utilities, rose.

The DAX Index dropped 0.3 percent to 6,419.22 at the close in Frankfurt, paring an earlier decline of as much as 1.5 percent. The broader HDAX Index fell 0.4 percent today.

“It’s a little bit of profit taking, combined with a little bit of disappointment,” Neil Smith, an analyst at WestLB AG in Dusseldorf, said.

Euro-area policy makers have no deadline for Greece to conclude its talks with private bondholders on a debt swap that both the parties broadly agreed to in October, two euro-region officials said last night.

Finance ministers balked at putting up more taxpayer funds. The debt swap aims to cut 100 billion euros ($130 billion) from the 205 billion euros of privately owned Greek debt, said the officials, who declined to be identified because the discussions are private.

Greece’s Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said today that the government intends to wrap up debt-swap talks with private investors by Feb. 1.

Siemens, Deutsche Bank

Siemens slid 1.3 percent to 77.39 euros. Net income from continuing operations in the fiscal first quarter fell 27 percent to 1.36 billion euros, the company said. That missed the average estimate of 1.47 billion euros in a Bloomberg survey of analysts. New orders also declined, making this year’s targets harder to reach, Chief Executive Officer Peter Loescher said.

Deutsche Bank dropped 1.8 percent to 32.90 euros, while Commerzbank fell 2.8 percent to 1.89 euros.

A gauge of banking shares was among the worst performers of the 19 industry groups on the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, falling 1 percent. Societe Generale SA, France’s second-largest lender, and Credit Agricole SA had their ratings downgraded to A from A+, with a stable outlook, Standard & Poor’s said yesterday.

EON and RWE rose 0.6 percent to 15.97 euros and 2 percent to 26.82 euros, respectively.

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