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German Stocks Fall as ThyssenKrupp, HeidelbergCement Drop

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Aug. 19 (Bloomberg) -- German stocks fell as investors awaited Wednesday’s release of Federal Reserve minutes amid speculation the U.S. central bank will reduce stimulus measures.

ThyssenKrupp AG lost 3.1 percent as Focus magazine reported that a potential European Commission ruling against power-tax reductions may threaten the viability of its steel business. HeidelbergCement AG slid 4 percent as UBS AG downgraded rival cement maker Holcim Ltd. Zooplus AG jumped the most in 11 months after second-quarter revenue beat analysts’ estimates.

The DAX Index slipped 0.3 percent to 8,366.29 at the close of trading in Frankfurt, a one-week low. The benchmark gauge increased 0.6 percent last week and has rallied 9.9 percent this year as central banks maintained monetary stimulus. The broader HDAX Index also retreated 0.3 percent today.

“There is a bad mood coming from America,” Robert Halver, head of capital markets research at Baader Bank AG in Frankfurt, said in a telephone interview. “Tapering is coming. It’s a new world, terra incognita, for what tapering could mean for the market as we have no historical benchmark.”

The Federal Open Market Committee’s minutes from its July 30-31 meeting will be released on Aug. 21. The publication will provide details about discussions that led to the continuation of the Fed’s $85 billion pace of monthly bond purchases and to a warning about the potential risks from inflation below the central bank’s 2 percent goal.

Central bankers and policy makers meet in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, from Aug. 22 to Aug. 24 to discuss the global economy and monetary policy.

ThyssenKrupp Falls

ThyssenKrupp dropped 3.1 percent to 16.15 euros. The largest German steelmaker is concerned that a European Commission ruling against reductions to energy taxes granted to German industries would threaten its steel business, Focus reported, citing an unidentified company executive.

HeidelbergCement, the world’s third-biggest maker of cement, retreated 4 percent to 55.80 euros, the lowest in almost three weeks. UBS cut its recommendation on Holcim to neutral, the equivalent of hold, from buy, citing possible downgrades to earnings estimates.

Deutsche Bank AG slipped 1.1 percent to 33.80 euros. German financial regulator Bafin is investigating whether the country’s biggest bank was late in reporting cases of potential money laundering to authorities, Welt am Sonntag reported, without saying where it obtained the information.

Zooplus jumped 8.2 percent to 49.33 euros as the online pet supplies retailer reported second-quarter sales of 101.8 million euros ($136 million), exceeding analysts’ estimates of 98.3 million euros. The share-price gain was the biggest since September 2012.

The volume of shares changing hands in DAX-listed companies was 33 percent lower than the average of the last 30 days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Morgan in Frankfurt at jmorgan157@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Rummer at arummer@bloomberg.net

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