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Capital investment aside, Japan Inc. spends big on acquisitions

TOKYO -- Japanese companies may be curtailing capital investment, but they are not afraid to open their wallets wide on acquisitions as a way to scale up quickly.

In the first seven months of 2016, Japanese companies lavished 5.91 trillion yen ($58 billion) on overseas acquisitions, according to merger and acquisition consultancy Recof. Though the tally is growing at a slower pace than in 2015 -- a year that went on to set a record for M&A outlays -- this year's spending has already surpassed the figures for all of 2013 and 2014.

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