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Survey shows German economy resisting trade fears _ so far

July 25, 2018

FILE - In this file photo dated Thursday, Sept. 10, 2009, car transporters in Ruesselsheim, central Germany. The European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said Thursday July 19, 2018, it is preparing measures to retaliate against the United States if US President Donald Trump escalates trade tensions with new auto tariffs. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, FILE)

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — A closely watched index of confidence among German business executives barely fell in July, suggesting that for now Europe’s largest economy remains unharmed by growing global conflict over trade.

The Ifo institute index fell to 101.7 points from 101.8 points in June. Business leaders were somewhat more satisfied with how things are now, but less so about expectations for the months ahead.

Analyst Carsten Brzeski at financial firm ING Germany said Wednesday that the results suggest that “trade fears are only fears and not a drag on growth — yet.”

U.S. President Donald Trump has imposed new import tariffs on steel and aluminum and on $34 billion in annual Chinese goods imports. He has said he may impose tariffs on the bulk of Chinese goods, and on autos.

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