German business confidence down more than expected in July on euro worries; 3rd straight fall

BERLIN – A closely watched survey shows that business confidence in Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, has slid more than expected in July as worries about the impact of the eurozone debt crisis deepen.

The Ifo institute said its confidence index dropped to 103.3 points in July from 105.2 in June. It was the third consecutive month-on-month fall.

Germany so far has been relatively unaffected by the debt-related economic troubles rocking the other countries in the 17-nation eurozone but worries are growing that it won’t be able to escape the fallout.

Wednesday’s Ifo reading was the lowest since the index stood at 102.0 in March 2010.