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Deutsche Bank seeks to reassure employees, investors as stock slides

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Deutsche Bank’s <DBKGn.DE> top executives sought to assure employees and investors over its ability to weather the coronavirus as shares in the German lender hit a new low on Thursday amid a wider stock market sell-off.

Christian Sewing, chief executive of Germany’s largest bank, told employees in a memo seen by Reuters that Deutsche Bank’s business was in “good shape as the positive momentum of the fourth quarter has continued”.

The bank has announced measures to shield employees from the coronavirus outbreak, including closing branches, splitting trading operations, and the cancellation of events.

Deutsche Bank’s chief financial officer James von Moltke told a German newspaper that there was no need so far to revise the lender’s profit forecast. The bank has forecast a pretax profit for 2020.

Von Moltke told Handelsblatt that while there was no need to rethink the forecast, “the situation is currently developing very dynamically”.

The executives made the statements as Deutsche Bank’s shares fell to a record low, closing 18% lower.

(Reporting by Patricia Uhlig and Tom Sims; Editing by Alexander Smith)