German stocks advanced, extending two weeks of gains for the benchmark DAX Index, as Sky Deutschland AG rallied after British Sky Broadcasting Group Plc started talks to buy the company.
Sky Deutschland rallied the most in more than two years. Infineon Technologies AG climbed 2.8 percent, tracking European technology shares higher. Suedzucker AG fell after Exane BNP Paribas said a possible purchase of Bunge Ltd.’s Brazil sugar assets would be negative for the sugar producer.
The DAX Index added 1.3 percent to 9,702.46 at the close of trading in Frankfurt, an 11-week high. The benchmark gauge posted a second week of gains after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said policy makers are prepared to ease monetary policy in June if necessary. The HDAX Index also rose 1.3 percent today.
“Sentiment is still positive and the overwhelming reason is that we are seeing an economic pickup not only in Germany but in the rest of Europe,” said Konstantin Giantiroglou, head of investment advisory at Neue Aargauer Bank AG in Brugg, Switzerland. “There’s an increasing level of activity that is going beyond our forecasts so things are looking really constructive.”
The volume of shares changing hands in DAX-listed companies was 9.5 percent higher than the 30-day average for this time of the day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Sky Deutschland advanced 9.9 percent to 6.97 euros. BSkyB, 39 percent owned by 21st Century Fox Inc., said today it’s in talks to take control of satellite carriers Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland in a deal valued at about 10 billion euros ($14 billion). Fox owns about 57 percent of Sky Deutschland.
Siemens AG added 2.1 percent to 98.67 euros. Europe’s largest engineering company starts its 4 billion-euro share buyback today. As many as 47.8 million shares could be repurchased by October 2015, the company said. The buyback was announced on Nov. 7.
Infineon gained 2.8 percent to 8.79 euros. A gauge of technology companies on the Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 2.1 percent, posting the second-best performance on the benchmark.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG climbed 4 percent to 18.41 euros. Chief Financial Officer Simone Menne said in an interview with Boersen-Zeitung that the company plans to keep net debt below 4 billion euros.
Suedzucker fell 0.9 percent to 16.19 euros. The company may be close to buying Brazilian sugar assets from Bunge, Exane said. The broker said a potential transaction will bring significant losses and the risk-reward profile is unattractive.