FRANKFURT (dpa-AFX) - Optimistic comments by the investment bank Jefferies on Mercedes-Benz boosted the Stuttgart-based company's shares on Wednesday. The shares of other German carmakers also rose in the slipstream of the buy recommendation.

In the morning, Mercedes shares rose to their highest level in seven months. They last traded up 1.4 percent at 73.15 euros. This made them one of the top stocks on the DAX. This also applies to the share price performance in the year to date, which has risen by 17%. They were followed on Wednesday by the shares of Porsche AG, BMW and Volkswagen, which gained between 0.4 and 1.2 percent.

Jefferies analyst Philippe Houchois had upgraded the shares of Mercedes-Benz from "Hold" to "Buy". He believes that the car manufacturer is in a position to return the entire cash inflow to shareholders without impairing the business. The reasons for this are the financial strength, a well thought-out restructuring and a somewhat less cyclical industry. The Group can always adjust investment costs upwards and downwards as necessary.

With a price target that has been raised from 75 to 100 euros, Houchois has become one of the biggest optimists for Mercedes-Benz among experts. Among the firms covered by the dpa-AFX analyst, only Deutsche Bank Research has an even higher target price. Tim Rokossa from the Frankfurt-based bank raised this to 125 euros on Monday, partly due to the generous returns to shareholders./edh/tih/jha/