October 22, 2020

Wirecard is finally getting booted from Germany’s blue-chip DAX index


Wirecard’s logo can be seen on a smartphone held in front of a stock market chart.

Alexander Pohl | NurPhoto | Getty Images

Insolvent payments company Wirecard will finally be ejected from Germany’s benchmark DAX index this month after exchange operator Deutsche Boerse announced a change in its selection rules.

Deutsche Boerse said Thursday that, from Aug. 21, a rule change will be implemented that allows it to remove insolvent companies from the DAX with two trading days’ notice. It added this rule change would apply to Wirecard, “given the current situation.”

Wirecard, once a high-flying tech company, collapsed into insolvency in June after admitting 1.9 billion euros ($2.2 billion) of cash had gone missing from its balance sheet. The firm became a constituent of the DAX index in 2018, replacing German lender Commerzbank.

Former CEO Markus Braun took the company from a little-known processor of payments for gambling and porn sites to one of Germany’s hottest tech investments. He and other former executives have since been arrested on suspicion of orchestrating a 3.2 billion euro commercial fraud.

The company’s accounting scandal, which was reported extensively by the Financial Times last year, has led to much criticism of German regulators and politicians for their failure to detect and prevent it.

Wirecard has said it will not be making any further statements.

The move from Deutsche Boerse comes ahead of a quarterly index review that was scheduled for Sept. 3. The company said it would also conduct an “in-depth review” of its rules, the results of which will be announced by the end of the year.



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