TOKYO -- Japan's real gross domestic product contracted 0.3% in April from the previous month, according to data released on Friday by the Japan Center for Economic Research.
The decline was driven by external factors: while the country's exports increased only 2.1%, imports grew 7.1%, creating a downward pressure on the monthly economic growth rate.
The robust growth in imports reflected relatively healthier domestic components of the economy. Companies' capital investment jumped by 3.4%, housing investment grew 2.5% and household consumption increased 0.3%.
However, the coronavirus state of emergency declared by the government in late April caused a decline in demand for service-related areas, such as dining in restaurants and travel.