NEW YORK (AP) -- The euro rose to its highest point against the dollar in eight months Wednesday as German business confidence increased more than expected.

Germany's Ifo institute said its confidence index rose to 102.4 in December from 101.4 the month before. Economists expected the index to rise to 102.

The euro rose to $1.3247 late Wednesday from $1.3220 late Tuesday. The euro rose as high as $1.3308 earlier, its highest point against the dollar since April 3.

In the U.S., discussions continued for a budget deal. President Barack Obama said Wednesday he and House Speaker John Boehner are "pretty close" to an agreement.

Traders have been worried that a deal won't be reached in time to avoid a series of steep tax increases and government spending cuts that are set to kick in at the beginning of next year unless the White House and Congress agree on how to reduce the budget deficit.

In other trading Wednesday, the British pound rose to $1.6258 from $1.6248.

The dollar rose to 84.42 Japanese yen from 84.20 yen and to 98.75 Canadian cents from 98.54 Canadian cents.

The dollar fell to 0.9121 Swiss franc from 0.9136 Swiss franc.

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