FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- A closely watched index of German business optimism rose for the fifth month in a row in September, reflecting the improved prospects for Europe's largest economy.
The Ifo institute's index edged up to 107.7 points from 107.6 in August. Market analysts had expected it to rise slightly more, to 108.0
The index is based on a survey of 7,000 companies about how they think the situation is now, and how they see things going in the coming months. It's a leading indicator, meaning it suggests where the economy is going in the months ahead.
Germany's economy expanded 0.7 percent in the second quarter, helping the 17-country euro currency union return to growth after six quarters of shrinking output.