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Growth

IfO sees German business mood bright but outlook slightly clouding

Global woes such as the turmoil in emerging markets or tighter US monetary policy have failed to dampen the mood among German businesses. The Ifo institute’s business climate index rose for the fourth month in a row.

German business confidence rose for the fourth consecutive month in February, climbing to 111.3 points from 110.6 points in January, the .

The institute's closely-watched barometer, which is based on responses from about 7,000 German business leaders, beat the expectations of economists polled by news agency Reuters. They had predicted a stable index reading at best.

Noting that the German economy was holding its own in a changeable global climate, Ifo President Hans-Werner Sinn said business leaders were optimistic but not euphoric.

Ifo's sub-index measuring current business rose to 114.4 points in February from 112.4 points in January. The forward-looking index for the medium term, however, slipped slightly to 108.3 points from 108.9 points in the previous months. This was primarily due to a small decline in export expectations, Ifo said.

German economy set for bigger growth

Although exports remain a strong pillar of German economic development in 2014, economists expect domestic consumption and investment to play a stronger role for growth in gross domestic product (GDP). In line with the experts' predictions, the the German government is anticipating a GDP rise of 1.8 percent this year, significantly up from just meager growth of 0.4 percent in 2013.

uhe/pfd (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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