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Japan's economy grows 1.6% in January to March: revised data

Published on Jun 9, 2014 9:54 AM
 
A man scratching his head crosses a street at a business district in Tokyo May 20, 2014. Japan's economy saw its strongest expansion in more than two years during the first quarter of 2013, revised data showed Monday, but a sales tax rise has weighed on growth since the levy hike. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's economy saw its strongest expansion in more than two years during the first quarter of 2013, revised data showed Monday, but a sales tax rise has weighed on growth since the levy hike.

The world's number-three economy grew by 1.6 per cent between January and March, slightly faster than an initial estimate of 1.5 per cent, and 6.7 per cent on an annualised basis - a hypothetical figure that stretches the pace of growth over the course of a year.

The latest figures confirmed the economy staged the biggest expansion since a 2.6 per cent growth in the July-September quarter of 2011, when it was rebounding from the earthquake-tsunami disaster in March of that year.

The nation's cash registers rang up big sales in the first quarter ahead of the April 1 consumption tax rise from 5.0 per cent to 8.0 per cent - seen as crucial to paying down Japan's massive public debt.

 
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