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Japanese retailers struggle as deflation lurks in shadows

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Value-conscious consumers are forcing Japanese retailers to recalibrate strategies.   © Kyodo

TOKYO -- Lackluster earnings at Japanese retailers this past spring suggest weakening consumer spending, a trend that could further depress prices and prolong the country's battle with deflation.

Aggregate pretax profit rose just 4.7% on the year for 63 retailers that released March-May results by Friday, much milder than the 11.6% increase a year earlier, data compiled by The Nikkei shows.

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