German stocks declined, trimming a monthly gain for the benchmark DAX Index, as concern grew the Federal Reserve will reduce debt purchases and the International Monetary Fund lowered its forecasts for China’s economic growth.
Brenntag AG, the largest distributor of chemicals, fell 1.8 percent after being fined by French regulators for infringing competition laws. Henkel AG fell 3.4 percent as a gauge of personal and household-goods makers was the worst performer among the 19 industry groups in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index.
The DAX Index dropped 1.7 percent to 8,336.58 at the close of trading in Frankfurt. The measure is still heading for a 5.3 percent gain in May and has rallied in all but one of the last 12 months as central banks around the world maintained their stimulus efforts. The broader HDAX Index slid 1.6 percent today.
The Fed buys $85 billion of Treasury and mortgage debt a month to support the economy. Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said on May 22 the central bank may cut the pace of buying “in the next few meetings” if conditions improve.
The IMF expects China’s economy to grow about 7.75 percent this year and next, David Lipton, first deputy managing director of the IMF, said in Beijing. In April, the IMF forecast growth of 8 percent this year and 8.2 percent expansion in 2014.
In Germany, data showed the number of people out of work rose a seasonally adjusted 21,000 in May. Economists in a Bloomberg survey forecast an increase of 5,000.
Brenntag slipped 1.8 percent to 120.15 euros. Brenntag and another unidentified company were fined 48 million euros ($62 million) by the French Competition Authority for competition-law infringements between 1998 and 2005.
Henkel, the Dusseldorf-based maker of Persil detergent, fell 3.4 percent to 75.82 euros.
Bayer AG, the maker of drugs and agricultural chemicals, retreated 3.1 percent to 83.88 euros.