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FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — An index of German investor optimism is up more than expected, suggesting market professionals think Europe's largest economy will slow down but avoid an outright recession.
The ZEW indicator of economic sentiment rose to plus 6.9 points in December, up from minus 15.7 in November. Markets had expected the index to rise only to minus 11.5.
Wolfgang Franz, head of the ZEW, or Centre for European Economic Research, said Tuesday the results showed that while German growth would cool off through the rest of the year, "Germany will not have to face a recession."
That's so long as the eurozone debt crisis does not deepen again, he added.
Germany's economy grew a modest 0.2 percent in the third quarter.