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BERLIN, Feb 22 (Reuters) - German business morale brightened unexpectedly in February, matching December's 33-month high, a survey showed on Wednesday, suggesting company executives are more upbeat about the growth prospects of Europe's largest economy.
The Munich-based Ifo economic institute said its business climate index, based on a monthly survey of some 7,000 firms, rose to 111.0 from a upwardly revised reading of 109.9 in January.
The reading came in far stronger than a Reuters consensus forecast for a value of 109.6.
"After making a cautious start to the year, the German economy is back on track," Ifo chief Clemens Fuest said in a statement.
Managers' assessment of the current business situation reached its highest level since August 2011 and firms also expressed greater optimism about the months ahead, he noted. (Reporting by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Paul Carrel)