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Japan Q1 GDP seen Falling Less that 1st Reported on Capex Upgrade: Poll

TOKYO, June 7 (Reuters) - The Japanese economy likely contracted at a slightly slower pace than initially reported in January-March due to upgrades to capital spending figures, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, although risks continue to cloud the outlook.

Economists expect growth to return this quarter, helped by tax cuts and wage hikes, but higher import costs due to a weaker yen are seen squeezing consumption while disruptions at some automakers are also likely to weigh.

Cabinet Office data out on Monday is expected to show the pace of gross domestic product (GDP) contraction narrowed to 1.9% annualised in the first quarter, slightly better than a 2.0% contraction first reported.

The revised numbers would translate into a quarter-on-quarter contraction of 0.5%, unchanged from an initial reading.

The revised GDP data is expected to show capital expenditure, a barometer of private demand, fell 0.7% in the first quarter, revised up slightly from a 0.8% decline in the initial estimate, making it a main factor for the upward GDP revision.

The preliminary data showed private consumption, which accounts for more than half of the Japanese economy, fell 0.7% in the first quarter, as rising living costs driven up by the weak yen squeezed household finances.

External demand, or exports minus imports, shaved 0.3 percentage point off from overall GDP figures.

Separate data issued on June 12 by the Bank of Japan (BOJ) is expected to show the corporate goods price index, which measures prices of goods companies charge each other, likely rose 2.0% in May year-on-year and 0.4% month-on-month.

Reporting by Tetsushi Kajimoto; Editing by Sam Holmes

Source: Reuters

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