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News Summary: German business confidence falls

The Associated Press

DISMAL DATA: A key measure of German business optimism unexpectedly declined in October, in another reminder that Europe's economic recovery is still fledging.

UNEXPECTED DROP: The Ifo index slipped to 107.4 points in October from 107.7 the month before. The consensus in the markets was for a modest rise to 108.0. The Ifo index, based on a survey of 7,000 German businesses, is considered a leading indicator showing where the economy may be headed in the months ahead.

THE CONTEXT: The decline was the first after five months of increases and follows a dip in surveys of activity in the services and manufacturing sectors in the 17 countries that share the euro currency.