TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's core machinery orders rose 8.3 percent in December and companies expect orders to pick up in January-March, government data showed on Thursday, in an encouraging sign that capital expenditure will help the economy.
The month-on-month rise in core orders, which exclude those of ships and electric power utilities, compared with a 2.4 per cent rise forecast by economists. It followed a 1.3 percent increase in November, Cabinet Office data showed.
Companies surveyed expect their core machinery orders to rise 1.5 per cent in the January-March quarter, after increasing 0.4 per cent in October-December.
Compared with a year earlier, core orders in December rose 11.4 per cent, against the median estimate of a 5.9 percent increase.
The Cabinet Office raised its assessment of machinery orders, saying they are in a gradual recovery.