- Associated Press - Monday, March 11, 2019

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) - Shares in Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank have risen after news reports that Deutsche Bank’s top management has agreed to hold preliminary talks about a possible merger.

Shares in Deutsche Bank traded up 2.2 percent in midday trading Monday while Commerzbank was up 3.9 percent.

The share moves follow a report in Germany’s Welt am Sonntag newspaper that informal contacts had taken place but not reached the level where security laws require informing investors. Merger speculation takes place against the background of statements by German government officials favoring bigger companies that can compete globally.

Merger talk over recent weeks has been greeted by skepticism since both banks are busy overhauling their own businesses, raising the question of how they would integrate a new partner.

Neither bank would comment on the reports.

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