Japan says economy contracted 7.1 percent in 2Q

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

TOKYO (AP) — Japan says revised data show its economy contracted at an annual rate of 7.1 percent in April-June.

The data released Monday showed business investment fell more than estimated earlier.

The recovery of the world's third-largest economy has slowed following an increase in the sales tax to 8 percent from 5 percent on April 1. The economy grew at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6 percent in January-March.

Business activity surged early in the year as consumers and businesses stepped up purchases to avoid paying more tax, and economists forecast a modest rebound in coming months.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has championed an aggressive stimulus program aimed at ending chronic deflation that has discouraged corporate investment, dragging on growth. But a sustainable recovery will require strong corporate and private spending.