German business sentiment climbed to the strongest since July 2011 in a sign that the economy is sustaining its momentum as revival in global trade trounces fears of rising protectionism.
The Munich-based Ifo institute’s business climate index rose to 112.3 in March from a revised 111.1 in February. That beat the median estimate of 111.1 in a Bloomberg survey of economists and prompted banks including UniCredit and Barclays to signal they may raise their growth forecast for Europe’s largest economy.
Germany expanded at the fastest pace in five years in 2016, a trend that’s set to continue as the Bundesbank says recent momentum might have been understated. Manufacturing and services output is increasing at the fastest pace in almost six years and unemployment is at a record low — factors that could contribute to stronger growth in the coming months even as political events such as U.S. policies, Brexit, and French elections continue to pose risks.
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