NAccording to reports of an interest of the Dutch financial services provider ING at Commerzbank, shareholder advocates in the Netherlands demand clarification. The ING should comment on whether the bank is interested in taking over the German bank, the investment community VEB on Wednesday.
ING should not react to any market rumor. But in the sense of an honest determination of the ING stock price clearness is necessary. The ING rate has fallen in recent days, probably because of the Commerzbank reports. ING must inform the shareholders under Dutch law about every concrete step towards a takeover, warned the VEB.
An ING spokesman said that similar demands had already been made at the recent Annual General Meeting. There was nothing to add to the replies of the Board at that time. ING boss Ralph Hamers had told the shareholders that the institution might consider buying overseas under certain circumstances – for example, if consolidation took place in one of the ING markets. Germany is the second largest market for ING after the Netherlands.
Meanwhile, the Italian bank Unicredit is apparently driving forward plans for a possible takeover of Commerzbank. Circumscribers familiar with the situation say that the Commerzbank Supervisory Board requires the Executive Board to clarify the future strategy of the institution as well as the reasons for ending the merger talks with Deutsche Bank.
According to a report by the "Handelsblatt", this is to take place at a special meeting of the Supervisory Board on 21 May, one day before the Annual General Meeting. A Commerzbank spokeswoman did not comment on the report. The meeting of the supervisory board had been arranged on the initiative of the Works Council and Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Uwe Tschäge.
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