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Fielmann Slumps as Deutsche Bank Cuts to Sell: Frankfurt Mover

Feb. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Fielmann AG, Europe’s largest chain of optical stores, slid the most in a year in Frankfurt trading as online competition and cost pressure prompted Deutsche Bank AG analysts to cut their recommendation on the stock to sell.

The shares dropped as much as 7.1 percent, and traded down 2.6 percent at 73.23 euros as of 10:19 a.m. Volume was almost three times the three-month daily average after less than two hours of trading. Of 23 analysts that rate the shares, 12 have hold recommendations and nine advise selling Fielmann, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

“Fielmann trades at 23 times 2013 consensus earnings,” Deutsche Bank analysts Benjamin Goy and Michael Kuhn wrote in a note to clients in which they lowered their share-price estimate to 60 euros. “This does not reflect, in our view, the weaker fundamental outlook.”

The rise of online eyeglass shops including Brille24 GmbH and Mister Spex GmbH is helping to overcome customer resistance to purchasing prescription glasses on the Internet, the analysts said. Fielmann’s late arrival to that market as well as a slowdown in store openings leaves it poorly equipped to absorb the rising cost of personnel, they wrote.

The stock has gained about 93 percent over the past five years compared with a 14 percent increase in the HDAX Index of 110 most highly capitalized German stocks, excluding dividends or coupons, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

To contact the reporter on this story: Angela Cullen in Frankfurt at acullen8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Angela Cullen at acullen8@bloomberg.net

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