FRANKFURT German police are investigating a suspicious envelope that was sent to the chief executive of Deutsche Bank Josef Ackermann on Wednesday.
A police spokesman in Frankfurt declined to say what was in the envelope but said a bomb disposal expert had been sent to the headquarters of Deutsche Bank, Germany's largest bank. In New York, a senior U.S. law enforcement official said it contained explosives.
Frankfurt police spokesman Alexander Kiessling said: "There was a piece of mail that arrived at Deutsche Bank that was noticed. It was noticed because it seemed unusual."
Ackermann is the face of capitalism in Germany and is one of the few senior managers in the country who is always surrounded by bodyguards. He is due to retire in May next year after more than 10 years at the helm of the bank.
The U.S. law enforcement official told Reuters that the "package" had been discovered in a mailroom around 1 p.m. Frankfurt time (7 a.m. EST) and contained explosives and shrapnel.
The official said it carried a return address from the European Central Bank, which is also located in Germany's financial centre.
"We confirm that a suspicious package has been sent to Deutsche Bank. It was handed over to police who started investigations," a Deutsche Bank spokesman said.
Banking sources said the bank had stepped up security measures around the world.
(Reporting by Maria Sheahan, Ed Taylor, Philipp Halstrick in Frankfurt, Mark Hosenball in Washington; Writing by Noah Barkin; Editing by Angus MacSwan)