German stocks gained, as the benchmark DAX Index (DAX) pared its third weekly loss, amid expiry of European equity-related options and futures contracts.
SAP AG (SAP) dropped 1.6 percent after Oracle Corp., the largest maker of database software, reported quarterly sales that missed estimates. Bayer AG (BAYN) rose 1.9 percent after Goldman Sachs Inc. advised investors to buy the shares.
The DAX Index added 0.3 percent to 7,952.66 at 10:33 a.m. in Frankfurt. The equity benchmark is still heading for a 2.2 percent drop this week as investors prepared for a potential paring of stimulus later this by the Federal Reserve. The gauge is on track for its fourth consecutive quarterly advance. The broader HDAX Index also increased 0.3 percent today.
“Triple Witching will be the key point today.” Soeren Steinert, who helps manage about $24 billion as associate director for equities trading at Quoniam Asset Management GmbH in Frankfurt, wrote in an e-mail.
Stocks may have bigger swings than usual today as European futures and options contracts expire in a process known as witching.
SAP, the largest maker of business-management software, dropped 1.6 percent to 55.70 euros. Oracle fell in U.S. trading after posting sales below estimates as customers shifted spending to rivals’ business tools delivered via the Web.
Merck KGaA, the German maker of cancer drug Erbitux, fell 1.6 percent to 121.15 euros after Goldman Sachs gave the stock a sell rating in new coverage.
Bayer AG added 1.9 percent to 82.12 euros as Goldman Sachs upgraded the shares to buy from neutral. The potential for growth and returns improvement at the German drugmaker are still under-appreciated, Goldman said in a note.
Continental AG (CON), Europe’s second-largest supplier of auto parts and OC Oerlikon, rose 1.2 percent to 99 euros.
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