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German Businesses Optimistic

German businesses are more optimistic than they have been in 10 years, according to a study released by the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) in Berlin on Tuesday. According to a survey of its 81 individual industry and trade chambers, the German economy is recovering -- slowly but surely. The report described the economy as not yet solid but "moving toward more firm ground." The DIHK predicted a significant increase in exports that would help drive the economy forward, despite the potential drag of a strong euro. The optimism, however, is not just driven by an expected increase in exports: German businesses are optimistic about the overall business picture, according to the DIHK. On a negative note, those surveyed continue to believe high unemployment will remain a problem in 2004, though the number of new lay-offs may decrease.