Euro, stocks higher on improved German business confidence

LONDON Wed Dec 19, 2012 4:16am EST

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LONDON Dec 19 (Reuters) - The euro inched up against the dollar while European stocks rose to their highest in 2012 on Wednesday after slightly better German business climate index for December.

But gains in the euro were checked as current conditions fell short of expectations.

The euro rose to $1.3249 from around $1.3240 after the German Ifo survey was released, up 0.1 percent and not far from a 7-1/2 month high of $1.3256 struck earlier in the day.

The FTSEurofirst 300 extended inched up to hit a fresh 2012 intraday high, up 0.4 percent to 1,141.80 points.

German Bund futures pared losses and were last 4 ticks lower on the day at 144.37 with two traders saying some investors who had been expecting a stronger number were taking the opportunity to square positions.

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