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Thursday, 10th February 2011
In General Japan News,

Japan's consumers show signs of optimism

Consumer confidence could be returning to Japan, according to new figures.

Data from the country's cabinet office shows that the consumer sentiment index rose to 41.1 in January from 40.1 in December. It is the first time that the index has improved in seven months and could be interpreted as a positive sign for the Japanese economy.

It is hoped that the renewed optimism of consumers could lead to increased spending over the coming months and this coupled with a recent rise in Japanese export levels, could bring a boost in growth for the country.

"While incomes are weak right now, future prospects are improving," Masamichi Adachi, senior economist for Japan at JP Morgan told BBC News.

"In general, global demand from countries like the US and China is improving. So with support from exports manufacturing activity is rebounding."

Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund has warned that Japan's current fiscal condition is "unsustainable" in the mid-to-long-term.

Written by Mark Smith.