Porsche Automobile Holding faces a fresh probe into insider trading charges linked to its failed attempt to take over Volkswagen, a prosecutor’s spokesman has said.
An investigation by the prosecutor’s office in Frankfurt, western Germany, has been launched as a result of suspected stock market manipulation, although no individual has been specifically targeted in the probe, the spokesman told AFP.
During August, Stuttgart prosecutors raided a number of homes and offices of Porsche directors.
Porsche shocked the stock market last October when it announced that it held options which would allow it to raise its stake in VW to around 75% causing VW shares to spike at more than EUR1,000 (US$1,400), briefly making it the biggest company in the world by market capitalisation.
Institutional investors such as pension funds reportedly lost large sums of money at the time when they were caught out by the move, and the subsequent sharp fall in VW shares, and are now filing complaints, business magazine WirtschaftsWoche reported.
The funds are claiming damages worth up to EUR100m(US$143m), the magazine said.
Porsche finally abandoned its attempt to take over VW, which is now set to take control of the sportscar maker as its 10th brand.