German business sentiment up slightly

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FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Germany's Ifo index of business sentiment rose slightly in June, suggesting a gradual economic recovery.

The closely-watched index came in Monday at 105.9 points, up from 105.7 the month before and in line with analysts' expectations.

Economists are watching Germany's economy because it has been a source of growth in the troubled 17-country euro currency union. Member countries such as Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy are struggling with heavy debt and recessions. The eurozone economy shrank in the first quarter, the sixth consecutive quarterly decline.

Germany's economy expanded only 0.1 percent in the first quarter and is believed to have improved in the second quarter. However, economists say the recovery may be stunted by the extensive flooding that interrupted business activity.

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