Volkswagen AG shares outperformed the overall market
Volkswagen AG shareholders experienced a mixed year on the stock markets in 2011. The price of ordinary and preferred shares was subject to pronounced volatility and ended the year at a slightly lower level. Once again, the Group took advantage of its strong position in the refinancing markets.
In 2011, the DAX was significantly more volatile than had been expected by many analysts at the start of the year. Thanks to healthy corporate results, the positive trend of the previous year continued initially in the first quarter and the DAX climbed above 7,500 points. Share prices came under considerable pressure following the political unrest in North Africa and the natural disasters in Japan. After recovering briefly, Germany’s leading share index mainly moved sideways in the second quarter. In the wake of the deepening debt crisis in the eurozone, uncertainty about increasing the debt limit in the USA and growing concerns about a slowdown in the global economy, sentiment on the equity markets deteriorated noticeably for the rest of the year. Fears about another financial market and banking crisis also grew during this period. The combination of these factors led to the DAX falling below the 5,000 mark at times in the third quarter. Towards the end of the third quarter, however, there were indications that the German equity market had bottomed out. The temporary stabilization that followed went hand in hand with market expectations that a possible systemic crisis could be prevented before the turmoil on the financial markets spilled over into the real economy. Nevertheless, uncertainty among market participants also remained high in the fourth quarter, and was mirrored in the occasionally erratic share price performance. Above all, the threat of the crisis in Greece spreading to additional members of the eurozone prevented share prices from recovering more strongly in the final quarter of the year.
At the end of 2011, the DAX had reached 5,898 points, a significant decrease on the previous year’s figure (–14.7%). The DJ Euro STOXX Automobile & Parts closed the year at 250 points, 24.8% lower than at the end of the previous year.