The country's economy expanded in a much stronger than expected annualised rate of 4% in April to June, its longest uninterrupted growth run in a decade, according to government figures out today.
The growth in Japan's GDP - 4.0 percent at an annualized rate - blew past market expectations for a 0.6 percent rise, and was well up from a 0.4 percent expansion in the first quarter, according to figures from the Cabinet Office.
The economy grew for six straight quarters in April-June.
Wages rose 0.7 per cent in April to June from the previous quarter, which was the biggest increase since July to September a year ago.
The costs of the companies in the second quarter grew by 2.4%, while the expected increase of 1.2%.
Combined, total domestic demand increased by 1.3ppts, completely offsetting a 0.3ppts drag from net exports. GDP increased at a 1% quarter-on-quarter pace.
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In a commentary, Barclays said: "The strength of private consumption reflects an improvement in employment and income conditions (eg, drop in unemployment, four consecutive years of increasing base pay), but likely also such factors as favourable weather during that period".
Consumer spending had remained tepid, however, and efforts to lift inflation have fallen flat despite years of aggressive monetary easing by Japan's central bank. And overseas demand - which led the economy's growth until the previous quarter - is confronted with various risk factors, ranging from the ongoing confusion caused by the US administration of President Donald Trump, tensions in Northeast Asia over North Korea's ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programs and concerns over the collapse of bubbles in the Chinese economy.
Inflation has lagged behind growth, even amid the tightest labour market in decades. "This in turn should help the further recovery of domestic demand, and decrease Japan's economic dependence on overseas economies and their policies".
The growth in personal consumption, which accounts for 60 percent of GDP, was supported by renewed demand for automobiles and household electric appliances, but is also believed to have been aided by favorable weather that pushed up spending by consumers.
While growth was faster than expected, it is not expected to nudge the Bank of Japan into dismantling its massive stimulus programme any time soon, as inflation remains stubbornly weak. This is notable because Japan usually relies on exports to drive growth.