NEW DELHI, Dec 17 (Reuters) - Business sentiment among Asia's top companies rebounded in the fourth quarter to the second-highest level in almost three years, a Thomson Reuters/INSEAD survey showed, helped by a stronger U.S. economy and a plunge in oil prices.
The Thomson Reuters/INSEAD Asian Business Sentiment Index increased to 72 in the fourth quarter from 66 in the previous three months. The result was only slightly below the 74 reading of the second quarter which was the highest since early 2012. A reading above 50 indicates an overall positive outlook.
Indian businesses provided the biggest boost to the index, with companies reporting a maximum score of 100 for the third consecutive quarter as they look to new Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speed up economic recovery.
Corporations in China, where worries about a slowdown in economic growth persist, were among the least positive with a reading of 50, coming in below Japan, which is stuck in recession, at 56. (Reporting by Tommy Wilkes; Editing by Christopher Cushing)