Japan Economy Unexpectedly Grows in Q1


The Japanese economy grew by 0.5 percent quarter-on-quarter in the three months to March 2019, easily beating market expectations of a 0.1 percent contraction and following a downwardly revised 0.4 percent advance in the previous period, a preliminary estimate showed.

The largest contribution to the GDP growth came from net exports (0.4 percentage points), followed by changes in private inventories (0.1 percentage points), while private demand subtracted 0.1 percentage points and public demand was neutral.

Net exports contributed positively to the growth for the first time over the past four quarters, as imports of goods and services plunged 4.6 percent (vs 3 percent in Q4), the biggest decrease since the first quarter of 2009. Meantime, exports fell at a slower 2.4 percent (vs 1.2 percent in Q4), the steepest decline since the second quarter of 2015.

Meanwhile, private demand growth eased to 0.1 percent in the March quarter from 0.8 percent in the preceding period, due to declines in both private consumption (-0.1 percent vs 0.2 percent) and capital expenditure (-0.3 percent vs 2.5 percent).

Public demand rose 0.2 percent (vs 0.3 percent in Q4), as a rebound in public investment (1.5 percent vs -1.4 percent) offset a contraction in government spending (-0.2 percent vs 0.7 percent).

On an annualized basis, the economy grew 2.1 percent in the first quarter, following a downwardly revised 1.6 percent expansion in the previous period and also beating market expectations for a 0.2 percent contraction.

Japan Economy Unexpectedly Grows in Q1


Cabinet Office | Rida Husna | rida@tradingeconomics.com
5/20/2019 9:37:01 AM