February 28, 2018 22:00 JST

The growth streak for Japan may end in 2018 first quarter

Summary

Judging by the weak industrial output and retail sales for January, there is a good chance the January-March quarter would show a negative growth for Japan, ending the eight-quarters-long positive growth streak. The weak economic activities in January were due to transitory factors and there is yet no reason to turn pessimistic on Japan's growth outlook though. Seeing a negatively growing quarter may also be a good wake up call for Japanese policymakers who have become complacent about achieving sustained reflation.

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