Commerzbank mulls capital hike to repay state bailout

GERMANY&rsquo;S second biggest lender Commerzbank said it is considering a capital increase and divestments among options for repaying &euro;16.4bn (&pound;14.8bn) in government bailout money.<br /><br />In January, Germany took a 25 per cent stake in Commerzbank as part of an &euro;18.2 rescue package to stabilise the lender, which was rocked by the financial crisis and its takeover of rival Dresdner Bank.<br /><br />Commerzbank said it would repay the government&rsquo;s tranche of non-voting capital contribution by 2012 at the latest.<br /><br />The lender completed the acquisition of Dresdner at the height of the fallout from the collapse of Lehman Brothers. Initial costs of integrating Dresdner are set to hit &euro;2.5bn &ndash; &euro;500m more than expected.<br /><br />For 2009, Commerzbank expects charges of &euro;6bn, of which &euro;4.3bn will be loan-loss provisions. <br /><br />The Frankfurt-based lender said crisis-related charges would continue in 2010 but are expected to decrease.<br /><br />Loan-loss provisions are expected to fall to around &euro;2bn by 2012.<br /><br />Commerzbank reaffirmed it expects to achieve revenue of just below &euro;14bn in 2012.