Japan’s retail sales growth eased sharply in November and Tokyo consumer prices logged its third consecutive fall in December as the third wave of coronavirus infections weighed on demand, official data showed Friday.

Retail sales grew 0.7 percent in November from the last year, but much slower than the 6.4 percent growth seen in October, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry reported.

Economists had forecast an annual growth of 1.7 percent. Nonetheless, this was the second consecutive growth after seven straight months of decline.

Elsewhere, data published by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications showed that the consumer price index for Tokyo dropped for the third straight month in December.

The Tokyo CPI declined 1.3 percent annually, following a 0.8 percent drop in November.

Excluding fresh food, consumer prices were down 0.9 percent versus a 0.7 percent decrease in November. This was the biggest fall since 2010. Prices were expected to decrease 0.8 percent.

Another report from the ministry showed that the jobless rate fell to a seasonally adjusted 2.9 percent in November, while the rate was forecast to remain unchanged at 3.1 percent.

The number of employed persons decreased by 550,000 from the previous year, which was the eighth consecutive fall. At the same time, unemployment increased 440,000 annually to 1.95 million.

The ministry said the jobs-to-applicant ratio rose to 1.06 from 1.04 in October.

The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com

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