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Japan’s Q2 GDP Growth Cools

Figures hit below market expectations.

TOKYO — Japan’s economic growth is cooling.

The county’s gross domestic product growth slowed in the second quarter of the year, coming in below market expectations. GDP for the April-June period grew at an annualized rate of 2.6 percent, Japan’s Cabinet Office said Monday.

On a seasonally adjusted quarterly basis, second-quarter GDP increased 0.6 percent. Japan saw robust growth of 0.9 percent in the first quarter.

A weak yen helped boost exports, but second-quarter growth slowed to 3 percent from 4 percent in the previous quarter.

Household consumption grew 0.8 percent in the quarter, in line with the growth registered in the first three months of the year. Nomura chief economist Tomo Kinoshita said it is likely the government will revise up the second-quarter growth rate when it releases second preliminary GDP figures in September.

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“We expect the Japanese economy to remain on a solid recovery path. Besides recent improvements in corporate and consumer sentiment, we expect recovery in domestic demand to receive a boost from a spike in demand ahead of the hike in the consumption tax scheduled for April 2014,” Kinoshita wrote in a research note.