German giants dazzle Dax

German giants dazzle Dax
In the midst of the eurozone's worst-ever economic crisis, Germany's stock index scaled three successive record highs this week. Business daily Handelsblatt examined some of the top companies driving the impressive figures.

Although the German economy might be widely considered to be remarkably robust, when the DAX scaled no less than three record heights this week it left analysts scratching their heads.

Better-than-expected jobs figures from the US no doubt had something to do with it. Communications giant Deutsche Telekom benefited from improved consumer confidence and there with strong sales of the iPhone5. On Wednesday shares rose by 4.7 percent to close on a seven-month high.

Allianz, Europe’s largest insurance company, also boasted substantial gains. Its shares, bolstered by significant profits in the first quarter of the year, rose 3.6 percent to hit a 5-year high.

Another upward mover was the Linde group, the world’s largest industrial gas company, whose share price rose to a record €149, before inching up another 2.8 percent.

Shares at pharmaceutical company Celesio rocketed on speculation published in the Platow Brief investor magazine that the Haniel group was planning to sell a portion of its stake in the company. However a spokesperson for the Haniel group later told Reuters news agency there were no plans to scale back its investment.

Chemical manufacturer Henkel was another major contributor to gains on the DAX. The Düsseldorf-based company performed better than expected thanks to strong sales of cleaning products and cosmetics. Shares increased by 5 percent, though that gain was tempered by poor figures in the glues sector.

But it wasn’t all rosy news on the German markets. Shares at ailing real estate company IVG plummeted almost 30 percent on Wednesday afternoon. Revenue fell by €31 million compared to the previous quarter.

All in all though, the Handelsblatt concluded, this week provided further evidence that Germany – unlike the rest of Europe – is continuing to weather stormy fiscal waters, leaving the economic outlook here bright – for now.

The Local/kkf

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