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German Stocks Gain as U.S. Sales Rise Beat Forecasts

Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) -- German stocks advanced, led by the country’s two biggest banks, as U.S. retail sales rose more than projected in September.

Commerzbank AG and Deutsche Bank AG gained at least 1 percent. SAP AG climbed 1.2 percent. Douglas Holding AG jumped 8.1 percent as Advent International Corp., a U.S. buyout firm, bid 1.5 billion euros ($1.9 billion) for the cosmetic retailer. Volkswagen lost 1.5 percent.

The DAX Index added 0.4 percent to 7,261.25 at the close of trading in Frankfurt, after earlier rising as much as 1 percent. The DAX has rallied 22 percent from this year’s low on June 5 as European Central Bank policy makers approved an unlimited bond-buying program and the U.S. Federal Reserve started a third round of asset purchases. The broader HDAX Index also gained 0.4 percent today.

Retail sales in the U.S. rose more than forecast in September. The 1.1 percent gain followed a revised 1.2 percent increase in August that was the biggest since October 2010 and larger than previously reported, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast of 77 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a 0.8 percent rise.

A report from China showed inflation in the world’s second-biggest economy was close to the slowest pace in two years last month. Consumer prices rose 1.9 percent from a year earlier, while the producer-price index fell 3.6 percent, the National Bureau of Statistics said on its website today.

Banks Rise

Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank gained 1.4 percent to 1.50 euros and 1 percent to 32.94 euros, respectively, as a gauge of banking stocks was the biggest riser of the 19 industry groups in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index.

SAP, the world’s largest maker of business-management software, climbed 1.2 percent to 54.85 euros.

Douglas jumped 8.1 percent to 37.62 euros, the biggest gain in nine months. Advent, the U.S. owner of French fashion brand Gerard Darel, bid 38 euros a share in cash for Douglas after the German retailer’s founding family agreed to take it private.

The buyout firm made the offer to Douglas’s shareholders through investment vehicle Beauty Holding Three AG, according to a regulatory statement today. The retailer’s three largest shareholders have a binding commitment to accept the bid, and Advent has secured 50.5 percent of Douglas’s stock, the U.S. company said.

Volkswagen, Europe’s biggest carmaker, fell 0.8 percent to 145.45 euros.

K+S AG, Europe’s largest potash distributor, dropped 3.2 percent to 36.50 euros as Liberum Capital Ltd. cut its recommendation on the shares to sell.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Morgan in Frankfurt at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Rummer at

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