Prosecutor Investigation

Sunk by a Trade

Kengeter, CEO of Deutsche Boerse attends the initial public offering of Scale at the Frankfurt stock exchange in Frankfurt,
Carsten Kengeter still has a lot of explaining to do. Source: Reuters

When Carsten Kengeter became a key player in German finance in June 2015, his new employer, Deutsche Börse, played up the “international perspectives” its new chief executive could realize for the operator of the country’s stock and derivatives exchanges. After two decades in London and Hong Kong, Mr. Kengeter was obviously meant to bring some global swagger to Eschborn, the grey suburb of Frankfurt that is home to Deutsche Börse.

Two years later, the wisdom of this move is under growing scrutiny. A failed merger with the London Stock Exchange (LSE) aside, the boss of the stock exchange operator is buffeted by the aftershocks of a personal stock trade that might simply have been poorly timed or, as Frankfurt prosecutors say, possibly illegal insider trading.

Either way, Deutsche Börse looks less a paragon of global savvy than of provincial ineptitude. Can Mr. Kengeter stay on?

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