German Business Sentiment Rises Unexpectedly in April

German business sentiment picked up further in April, beating forecasts in a sign that Europe's largest economy "is growing strongly," the Ifo institute said Monday.

Its business climate index rose to 112.9 points from 112.4 points in March. This marks the highest level since July 2011, when the widely-watched index stood at 113.0 points. Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal had forecast a stable result.

The monthly survey of around 7,000 companies showed that they were more upbeat about their current business situation but slightly trimmed their six-month outlook. The mood among German construction companies, meanwhile, hit a record?-?high in April.

Europe's largest economy is forecast to expand around 1.5% this year and 1.8% in 2018, according to Germany's leading economic think tanks. A solid economic performance and record-low unemployment could also bolster Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative parties as Germany heads to the ballots in September.

Write to Nina Adam at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 24, 2017 04:42 ET (08:42 GMT)