German stocks climbed, posting their biggest-three day gain since December, as Commerzbank AG and Gerresheimer AG reported profit that beat estimates.
Commerzbank and Gerresheimer each advanced more than 1 percent. Suess Microtec AG tumbled the most in three months after its sales forecast for 2014 missed analysts’ projections.
The DAX Index gained 0.6 percent to 9,596.77 at the close in Frankfurt after earlier dropping as much as 0.6 percent. The benchmark gauge has advanced 3.3 percent since Feb. 10 as Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen pledged to continue her predecessor’s policies to support the U.S. economy and as a report showed that Chinese imports surged. The broader HDAX Index added 0.5 percent today.
“There’s a lack of big catalysts after Yellen’s speech,” said Jacques Porta, who helps oversee $780 million at Ofi Gestion Privee in Paris. “We expect to see more volatility in stock markets this year.”
In the U.S., a Commerce Department report showed that retail sales decreased 0.4 percent in January. The median forecast of economists in a Bloomberg survey had predicted no decline. The government also revised the figure for December to show a drop of 0.1 percent. A separate release from the Labor Department showed that initial unemployment claims rose to 339,000 in the week ended Feb. 8 from 331,000 in the preceding week. Economists had forecast a decline to 330,000.
Commerzbank gained 1.5 percent to 13.60 euros. Germany’s second-biggest lender reported fourth-quarter net income of 64 million euros ($87 million), exceeding the 23.3 million-euro average estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
Gerresheimer climbed 3.3 percent to 50.47 euros after the maker of drug-delivery systems reported quarterly earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of 82.4 million euros. That exceeded the average analyst projection of 76.2 million euros.
Draegerwerk AG jumped 7.8 percent to 97 euros after saying it expects sales to increase 3 percent to 6 percent in 2014. That implies revenue of 2.47 billion euros to 2.54 billion euros, more than the 2.46 billion euros that analysts in a Bloomberg survey had projected.
Carl Zeiss Meditec AG advanced 2.7 percent to 22.20 euros. The maker of ophthalmology equipment reiterated that its Ebit margin will increase to 15 percent by 2015 even after reporting revenue and Ebit in the first quarter of its financial year that fell short of analysts’ estimates.
Suess Microtec plunged 7.3 percent to 7.10 euros after forecasting sales of 135 million euros to 145 million euros for 2014, trailing the average analyst projection in a Bloomberg survey of 159.1 million euros.
Puma SE lost 0.9 percent to 210.55 euros after JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered its recommendation on the sporting-goods company to underweight from neutral, meaning that investors should sell the shares. The brokerage said that Puma’s Ebit probably dropped 33 percent in 2013. The company reports its full-year results on Feb. 20.