Apple, the Google mother Alphabet and Microsoft have been the darlings of investors in 2017 as well. The three US technology and Internet companies are again at the top of the world's 100 most valuable listed companies, but Chinese Internet companies are catching up fast.

This is the result of a study by the testing and consulting company EY. The German companies SAP, Siemens, Bayer, Allianz, BASF and VW made it into the top 100. In sum, they were with 662 billion dollars, just about as much as the software company Microsoft (661 billion) alone.

The software company SAP ranks 62nd as the most expensive German company, followed by Siemens (rank 72), Bayer (84), Allianz (85), BASF (89) and VW (94).

As the European company with the highest market value, the Dutch energy company Royal Dutch Shell came 17th. "Although the European economy is currently recovering significantly, Europe's top companies only play a subordinate role on the global stock exchanges," analyzed EY Germany boss Hubert Barth , US corporations continued to dominate and Asian companies caught up strongly. Thus, the Chinese Internet companies Tencent Holdings and Alibaba more than doubled their market value within a year and made it into the top ten.

High value growth on the stock exchanges is achieved by Barth, above all in the area of ​​digital future technologies. "In this field, the US and Chinese companies are leaders. In Europe, on the other hand, the traditional industrial sectors still dominate. "

In total, 24 European companies ranked among the first hundred and as many as a year ago. From Asia 22 and thus three corporations made the leap into the top league. By far, most companies still come from North America, although their number has dropped from 57 to 54.

Even though investors are increasingly interested in technology companies, most of the top 100 companies were consumer goods manufacturers (24 groups). In second place was the financial sector with 21 companies. 19 companies came from information technology. By comparison, classic industrial companies played only a subordinate role: Eight industrial companies - as many as in the previous year - were among the 100 most valuable corporations.

The cumulative market value of all 100 companies rose by nearly 26 percent year-on-year to $ 20.2 trillion, with US companies accounting for $ 12.2 trillion, or about 60 percent of the total.