German investor optimism drops un expectedly

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by Laura Matovina

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- Germany's ZEW institute survey of investor confidence fell unexpectedly in July in another downbeat sign for the eurozone economy.

The institute said Tuesday its index fell for the third month in a row to minus 19.6 points from minus 16.9 in June. Market analysts foresaw a small increase to minus 15.0.

Germany is the largest economy in the 17-country eurozone and has an outsized impact on currency union and its efforts to dig out of a crisis over too much government debt. The German economy is still expected to show modest growth this year.

Economic indicators have worsened recently as the debt crisis rages on. The European Central Bank cut its key interest rate July 5 to a record low 0.75 percent to stimulate the eurozone economy.

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