German business sentiment unexpectedly rose in March, with the mood improving in the retail sector as the impact of a new year's sales tax hike appeared to fade, a closely watched survey showed on Tuesday.
The Munich-based Ifo research institute said its business climate index, based on a monthly poll of 7,000 firms, rose to 107.7 from 107.0 in February.
The reading was above the mid-range forecast in a Reuters poll of 60 economists for a dip to 106.5 (EUROLANDMAR).
Forecasts ranged between 105.2 and 107.5.
Ifo's current conditions index rose to 112.4 from 111.6 in February. The business expectations index rose to 103.2 from 102.6.