Japan’s economy shrank less than initially estimated in the first quarter but the broad impact from the coronavirus crisis is still expected to send the country deeper into recession.
A series of recent April data including exports, factory output and jobs figures suggested Japan is facing its worst postwar slump in the current quarter as the outbreak forced people to stay at home and businesses to close globally.
The world’s third-largest economy shrank an annualised 2.2% in January-March, revised data showed on Monday, less than the 3.4% contraction indicated in a preliminary reading and compared with a median market forecast of a 2.1% drop.
The revised data confirmed Japan had slipped into recession for the first time in 4-1/2 years, after a 7.2% contraction in October-December, pressured by last year’s sales tax hike and the U.S.-China trade war. Recessions are defined as two straight quarters of contraction.