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Economy

Japan GDP rebounds in Q2 with 1.3% annualized growth

First uptick in 2 quarters beats forecasts despite COVID state of emergency

The upswing was weaker than other advanced economies, highlighting Tokyo's struggle in containing the pandemic.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Japan's economy grew 0.3% in April-June from the previous quarter, equal to an annualized pace of 1.3%, the Cabinet Office announced on Monday, as corporate capital spending turned positive despite consumer spending that remained sluggish amid COVID-19.

The first turnaround in two quarters was bigger than an annualized increase of 0.66% that economists had expected. Most of the period between April and June coincided with a state of emergency in Tokyo, Osaka and other areas, when measures such as curbing outings, shortening restaurant hours, and closing large commercial facilities were implemented.

Japan suffered negative growth in the April-June quarter of 2020, when a state of emergency was declared for the first time in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. But growth turned positive in the July-December period.

In January-March of 2021, a decline in personal consumption due to the state of emergency in the Tokyo metropolitan area and other areas pushed down the overall growth rate, turning negative for the first time in three quarters.

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