German Stocks Little Changed Near Record; ThyssenKrupp Rallies
German stocks were little changed, after the benchmark DAX Index (DAX) rose to its sixth straight record high, as a report showed the nation’s economy expanded less in the first quarter than economists predicted.
ThyssenKrupp AG (TKA) jumped to a six-week high as the steelmaker reported adjusted earnings that beat analysts’ predictions. Commerzbank AG rallied 12 percent on the first day of its 2.5 billion-euro ($3.2 billion) capital increase, when shareholders can exercise subscription rights for new stock. TUI AG gained 2.9 percent after saying it targets 1 billion euros in operating profit by 2015 and plans to restore its dividend.
The DAX Index added less than 0.1 percent to 8,340.84 at 9:48 a.m. in Frankfurt, after posting its longest winning streak in almost 14 months. The benchmark rallied for three successive weeks as companies reported better-than-forecast results and optimism increased that central banks will maintain economic stimulus. The HDAX Index fell less than 0.1 percent today.
“Until up to one month ago, everyone was expecting growth to pick up in the second quarter or during the course of the year -- that may be true in the U.S., but it’s absolutely not true in Europe,” Nicola Marinelli, who helps oversee $180 million at Glendevon King Ltd in London, told Francine Lacqua on Bloomberg Television. “Probably the number for Germany, if you adjust it for trading days, is negative. The weakness in Germany can be good for the ECB as it gives them more leeway to more monetary stimulus.”
The volume of shares changing hands on DAX-listed companies was 85 percent greater than the average of the past 30 days, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
The German economy, Europe’s largest, expanded less in the first quarter than economists had predicted. Gross domestic product rose 0.1 percent from the fourth quarter, when it fell a downwardly revised 0.7 percent, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said. Economists had forecast a 0.3 percent gain, according to the median of 41 estimates in a Bloomberg survey.
The 17-nation euro area economy contracted 0.1 percent in the first quarter, after a 0.6 percent decline in the final quarter of 2012, economists predicted before the European Union’s statistics office releases the initial figures at 11 a.m. in Luxembourg. That would be the sixth straight quarterly contraction.
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