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Japan's big growth streak just came to an end

16 May 2018

To get back on track, Japan needs to increase its exports. Economists has forecast annualized contraction of around 0.2%.

The poor first quarter snapped a string of eight straight quarters of expansion for the Japanese economy, which had marked the longest such streak in more than three years.

"But we need to be mindful of the impact of overseas economic uncertainty and market volatility", he added.

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The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, lost 2.24 points, or 0.12 percent, to 1,802.91.

Slower export growth reflected a decline in shipments of mobile phone parts and factory equipment in the quarter, a government official said.

Economists say while the contraction is temporary, the rebound will not be almost as strong as previous quarters.

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Domestic demand lopped 0.2 percentage points (ppts) of quarterly growth, driven lower by declines in housing investment and private business inventories.

Japan's economy contracted by 0.2 percent quarter on quarter in the January-March period, the Cabinet Office reported Wednesday.

It was the first decline in nine quarters, snapping the longest stretch of continued expansion since the late 1980s. Heavy snows in February also restricted household spending by keeping consumers inside and driving up vegetable prices.

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"The economy is unlikely to continue to contract further".

Japan's big growth streak just came to an end