Bloomberg News

German Stocks Drop; Bechtle, Q-Cells Slide as Medion Advances

June 01, 2011

June 1 (Bloomberg) -- German stocks fell the most in a week amid slowing European and Chinese manufacturing and after a private report showed companies in the U.S. added fewer workers than forecast to payrolls last month.

Bechtle AG retreated 7.7 percent after BWK GmbH said it will sell shares in the computer and software retailer. Q-Cells SE and Nordex SE snapped two days of gains. ThyssenKrupp AG and Salzgitter AG dropped with metal prices. Medion AG jumped the most in 8 1/2 years after Lenovo Group Ltd., China’s biggest maker of personal computers, offered to buy the company.

The benchmark DAX Index decreased 1.1 percent to 7,217.43 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Frankfurt. The gauge rallied 1.9 percent yesterday after Jean-Claude Juncker said European Union leaders will decide on additional aid for Greece by the end of June and have ruled out a “total restructuring” of the nation’s debt. The broader HDAX Index dropped 1 percent today.

“Macroeconomic risks matter today,” said Daniel Weston, a Munich-based portfolio adviser at Schroeder Equities GmbH. “Poor manufacturing and employment data have finally put pressure on equity markets which had been resilient to bad news in the past week.”

A gauge of manufacturing in the 17-nation euro area slipped to 54.6 in May from 58 in April, London-based Markit Economics said today. That’s below an initial estimate of 54.8 released on May 23. A reading of more than 50 indicates growth.

Chinese Economy

China’s manufacturing expanded at the slowest pace in nine months in May as the government extended a campaign to cool inflation and the property market.

German stocks extended declines as U.S. employment increased by 38,000 last month, the smallest gain since September, from a revised 177,000 in April, according to figures from ADP Employer Services. The median estimate in the Bloomberg News survey called for a 175,000 advance for May. A separate report showed manufacturing in the U.S. expanded in May at the slowest pace in more than a year.

Bechtle slumped 7.7 percent to 28.68 euros, the largest drop since September 2009. BWK said it will offer as many as 3.9 million Bechtle shares at 29 euros apiece to institutional investors.

Q-Cells slid 12 percent to 1.82 euros, while Nordex declined 5.3 percent to 6.75 euros. Alternative-energy stocks had rallied for two days as German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition set 2022 as the final date to close the country nuclear reactors, making Germany the largest nation to abandon atomic power.

Steelmakers Slip

ThyssenKrupp and Salzgitter, Germany’s biggest steelmakers, fell 1.3 percent to 32.57 euros and 2.3 percent to 50.16 euros, respectively. Aluminum, copper, lead, nickel, tin and zinc all retreated on the London Metal Exchange.

Medion soared 18 percent to 13 euros, the largest advance since October 2002. Lenovo offered to buy the consumer- electronics company for 466 million euros ($671 million) in its biggest acquisition since the purchase of International Business Machines Corp.’s PC business more than six years ago.

GSW Immobilien AG gained 1.9 percent to 22.85 euros, the highest price since the company’s initial public offering in April. The German real-estate company that sold shares to the public for the first time in April plans to pay a dividend of at least 90 cents a share for this year, Boersen-Zeitung said, citing Chief Financial Officer Andreas Segal.

Separately, Commerzbank initiated coverage of the stock with a “buy” rating and a price estimate of 26.50 euros.

--Editors: Christiane Lenzner, Andrew Rummer

To contact the reporter on this story: Julie Cruz in Frankfurt at jcruz6@bloomberg.net

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


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