In an incident that was sold by German newspapers as evidence of the disrespect some politicians have for the unemployed, the deputy leader of the German state of Bremen poured sparkling wine over the head of a homeless man in an apparent joke that went wrong and which led to his eventual resignation. Peter Gloystein of the centre-right Christian Democrat Union (CDU) was caught on camera pouring a magnum of wine over the head of stunned Bremen local Udo Ölschläger at the launch of German wine week on Wednesday evening. Gloystein, Bremen state economy and culture minister, said late on Thursday he deeply regretted the incident and apologised to his victim. He said he had "misinterpreted" the situation but did not explain what he meant. The Bremen culture ministry confirmed later that Gloystein had resigned from his various posts.
Computer hackers have attacked the website of the European Central Bank, stealing email addresses and phone numbers. The lender denied that any sensitive financial data had been compromised.
US auto giant General Motors (GM) has issued another million-strong recall. While the announcement brings GM's tally to 30 million faulty vehicles this year, its subsidiary Opel has flourished.
Chemicals company BASF expects the Ukraine crisis to de-escalate, easing its bottom line. The German firm has turned a healthy profit thanks to big business in Russia, but worries about sanctions.