German business confidence drops amid growing concerns

MarketsAssociated Press

German business confidence has fallen amid growing concerns about international risks like the possibility of a trade war with the United States.

The Munich-based Ifo institute said Thursday its business climate indicator fell to 114.7 points in March from 115.4 points in February. Businesses assessed the current situation worse, with the sub-index falling to 125.9 from 126.4 the previous month. Their expectations also dropped to 104.4 from 105.4 in March.

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Germany's economy is doing well and the government is predicting 2.4 percent growth this year. But on Wednesday, a council of economic advisers to the government warned that possible U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum could spark a trade war, which would hurt growth.

Ifo's survey is based on about 7,000 responses from firms in manufacturing, construction, wholesale and retail.