Concerns about the economy and rising yields on the bond markets are weighing on the stock markets.
On Tuesday, in the first few minutes after opening, the Dax slipped below the round mark of 14,000 points for the first time since mid-March this year.
In the further course of trading, the leading German index lost 1.6 percent to 13,973 points, but was able to climb back above 14,000 points in the course of the morning.
In the previous week, the Dax was able to stay just above the round mark.
The second-tier index M-Dax temporarily fell by 1 percent to 30,278 points.
The leading euro zone index, the Euro Stoxx 50, fell by 1.4 percent.
On Monday, the sell-off in technology stocks in particular continued in the United States with rising bond yields.
On Wall Street, the American standard value index Dow Jones had lost 1.2 percent to 34,308 points at the start of the week, the American technology index Nasdaq Composite 2.2 percent to 13,412 points.
Asia's stock exchanges then mainly recorded price losses.
"Everything that involves risk flies out of the depots," said Thomas Altmann, portfolio manager at asset manager QC Partners.
A billion-dollar placement of Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank shares in Germany sent the prices of the two major German banks in particular down.
Deutsche Bank shares fell by more than 10 percent at the top, while Commerzbank shares fell by up to 9 percent.
After the American hedge fund Cerberus, the two institutes are losing another major investor.
The seller's name has not yet been released.
bond price losses
German Bunds started trading on Tuesday with slight price losses.
At times, the trend-setting futures contract Euro-Bund-Future fell by 0.12 percent to 154.81 points.
The yield for ten-year federal bonds was up to 0.84 percent.
This is the highest level since mid-2015.
Market participants should also pay attention to inflation figures from the USA on Tuesday.
The government releases its data for March.
An inflation rate of more than 8 percent is expected.
In February, inflation was just under 8 percent.
That was the highest value in about 40 years.
High inflation has been driving capital market interest rates for a long time.
ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment decreases
The barometer for the assessment of the German economy in the next six months fell by 1.7 to minus 41 points in April, as the Mannheim Center for European Economic Research (ZEW) announced on Tuesday in its monthly survey of 163 analysts and investors.
March saw the sharpest decline since the survey began in December 1991 because of the Russian invasion.
Economists had now even expected a drop to minus 48 points for April.
"The experts assume that the current economic situation is bad and will continue to deteriorate," explained ZEW President Achim Wambach.Keywords: