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German investor morale surges on expectations of shopping bonanza

·1 min read

BERLIN, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Investor sentiment in Germanyrose by far more than expected in February on expectationsconsumption will take off in the coming six months, the ZEWeconomic research institute said on Tuesday, buoying the outlookfor Europe's largest economy.

The ZEW said its survey of investors' economic sentimentshowed a rise to 71.2 points from 61.8 the previous month. AReuters poll had pointed to a fall to 59.6, and the Februaryreading surpassed even the highest forecast, of 68.0.

"The financial market experts are optimistic about thefuture. They are confident that the German economy will be backon the growth track within the next six months," ZEW PresidentAchim Wambach said in a statement.

"Consumption and retail trade in particular are expected torecover significantly, accompanied by higher inflationexpectations," he added.

A separate gauge of current conditions eased to -67.2 from-66.4 the previous month. That compared with a consensusforecast of -67.0 points.

(Writing by Paul CarrelEditing by Caroline Copley)