Japan's key economic gauge rises 0.3 points in April

15:02, June 07, 2011      

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A key gauge of Japan's current economic conditions rose a preliminary 0.3 points in April following a record plunge a month earlier, the cabinet office said in a report on Tuesday.

The composite index of coincident indicators such as industrial output, retail sales and overtime working hours, which reflects current business conditions in Japan, rose to 103.8 from 103.5 in the prior month, against the 2005 base of 100, the government report showed.

April's 0.3 point rise follows a record 3.2-point plunge logged a month earlier which revealed the extent of fallout the March 11 earthquake and tsunami had on business conditions in Japan.

According to the preliminary government data, the leading composite index which measures the state of the economy three months ahead lost 3.7 points to 96.4.

As for the lagging index, which reflects economic conditions three months in the past, the index gained 1.8 points to 90.7, the Cabinet Office said.

March's CI was slightly higher than median market forecasts and the figures in April led the cabinet office to maintain its overall assessment, saying that the composite index "indicates that the economy is improving," but noted that the March 11 twin disasters had caused the three-month backward moving average to turn negative.

Source: Xinhua
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