A closely watched survey indicates German consumers' worries about the economy are deepening.

The GfK research group said Thursday that its forward-looking consumer climate index dropped to 9.6 points for October from 9.9 points in September.

It says the three indicators that provide the index number — willingness to buy, income expectations and economic expectations — all fell.

GfK says "in light of the global economic risks, numerous flash points and the recent sharp increase and largely uncontrolled influx of refugees, citizens apparently have increasing doubts regarding further economic development. "

The survey of some 2,000 consumers was conducted before the news broke that Germany's Volkswagen, the world's top-selling carmaker, had manipulated emissions tests in the U.S., raising the likelihood the index might suffer a further drop next month.