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METI report shows Japan retail declines for 16th month

Updated:2010-01-28 14:42:01

A report released by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) on Thursday showed that Japan's retail sector suffered a 16th consecutive month of declining sales in December.

Commercial sales fell by 11.1 percent year on year and stood at 45,694 billion yen (510 billion U.S. dollars). Meanwhile, wholesales sales dropped by 14.7 percent and retail sales by 1 percent. Large scale retail stores saw their business fall by an adjusted 4.6 percent.

Factors such as the huge cuts to bonuses the Japanese work force saw, deflation and the strength of the yen against the dollar likely led to the continued decline for the retail industry.

On the positive side, however, the figures showed that Japan's retail sector may be over the worst of the slump, with the decline levelling off in all areas, after seeing the largest decreases in sales in the March to June quarter.

The October-December quarter saw commercial sales down by 15 percent, while wholesale and retail sales fell by 19.3 percent and 0.8 percent respectively. Adjusted figures for large-scale retail stores showed sales declined by 7.0 percent.

Japan has suffered in the aftermath of the credit crisis that started in the United States in the second half of 2008. Since then, results have picked up for manufacturers and exporters, but the good news has yet to reach households, which are struggling with lower incomes and high unemployment.

 

 

Source:http://news.xinhuanet.com

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