Japan’s GDP Grows at 0.6% Annualized Rate in 4th Quarter

File photo / Reuters
Shoppers check foods at a supermarket in Tokyo on Jan. 10.

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Japan’s economy grew at an annualized rate of 0.6% in price-adjusted real terms in the fourth quarter of 2022 from the previous three months, the Cabinet Office said in a preliminary report Tuesday.

The pace of growth was slower than market expectations in the October-December period due to rising prices and slowing overseas economies though the Japanese economy has recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The recovery in services consumption was weaker than expected as consumer sentiment worsened due to rising prices,” Takeshi Minami of Norinchukin Research Institute Co. said.

Shigeyuki Goto, economic and fiscal policy minister, said the data “showed that the economy is recovering moderately” as the country is living with COVID-19. “We will not hesitate to take necessary policy steps while closely watching economic and price trends,” Goto said at a press conference.

Personal consumption rose 0.5% from the July-September period, posting a gain for the third consecutive quarter.

While services consumption, including expenses on accommodation and eating out, was robust thanks to the government’s domestic travel promotion campaign, expenditures on beverages and clothing were weak as consumers spent less.

Corporate capital spending dropped 0.5%, the first decline in three quarters, on decreased investments in semiconductor manufacturing equipment.

Housing investment edged down 0.1%, falling for the sixth straight quarter, due to surging prices for construction materials. Public works spending declined 0.5%.