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Euro zone investor morale gains in March but no sign of spring revival

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Investor morale in the euro zone improved for the fifth consecutive month in March to its highest level since April 2023, a survey showed on Monday, but economists warned of a "persistent" recession in Germany.

However, Sentix's index for the euro zone remained in negative territory. It rose to -10.5 points in March from -12.9 in February, beating a reading of -11.0 estimated in a Reuters poll of analysts.

Sentix pointed to Germany - the region's largest economy - as a pocket of particular weakness, with a decline in sentiment.

"Although the data points in the right direction, there can be no talk of a classic spring revival" for the euro zone, Sentix said.

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It pointed to German economic policy as "preventing a thorough economic recovery in the heartland of Europe. The recession remains in place," it said.

For the euro zone, the expectations index rose to -2.3 points from -5.5 in February, a sixth consecutive month of rises and the highest value since February 2022.

The index on the current situation in the euro zone also rose, increasing to -18.5 in March from -20.0 the previous month, the fifth monthly increase in a row.

The poll of 1,267 investors was conducted between Feb. 29 and March 2.

(Reporting by Tom Sims, Editing Rachel More)