TOKYO (REUTERS) - Japanese consumer confidence worsened sharply to hit a six-month low in July, a government survey showed, a sign households were feeling the pinch from rising food prices and tame wage growth.
The data casts further doubt on the Bank of Japan's view that private consumption will emerge from the doldrums and help the economy rebound from an expected contraction in April-June.
An index gauging households' sentiment, which includes views on incomes and jobs, fell 1.4 points from the previous month to stand at 40.3 in July, a Cabinet Office survey showed on Monday. It was the lowest reading since January.
The Cabinet Office downgraded its assessment on consumer confidence to say it is "stalling."
The survey also showed that 87.7 per cent of the respondents expect consumer prices to rise a year ahead, up from 87.3 per cent in June.