Germans are in the mood to shop again like they haven't been in nearly four years, according to a survey by the marketing research firm GfK. The survey's "acquisition indicator" -- calculated on the basis of a survey of 2,000 Germans -- rose 8.6 points to the highest level since December 2001. Analysts asked by Reuters before the survey had expected the indicator to actually fall by some 2.7 points. Researchers said it is likely people are eager to make purchases now before a possible increase of the value-added tax, which could go into effect if the conservatives win elections to be held on Sept. 18. But consumers are also more optimistic about the economy in general and their own incomes. The polling organization said the upcoming elections are having an overall positive effect on the mood among consumers, but warned that the survey did not indicate any long-term growth in consumption levels.