By Kantaro Komiya and Yoshifumi Takemoto
TOKYO (Reuters) – Sales in Japan rose sharply than expected in November, due to a reduction in COVID-19 cases in the month, which has encouraged consumers to increase their purchasing power.
To finance the economy, the government on Friday approved a $ 940 billion budget for 2022, including funding to help families and businesses affected by the epidemic.
The prospect of recovery from alcoholism, however, is fraught with uncertainty over the new species of Omicron coronavirus, which began to spread locally last week in major Japanese cities.
“At the moment, consumers are less affected by Omicron because the number of vehicles on foot is increasing,” said Masato Koike, an economist at Dai-ichi Life Research Institute.
The government said Thursday it was not considering domestic changes to COVID-19 because of Omicron.
“But if a new disease breaks out … there is a risk, or maybe in the meantime, drinking can be reduced by Omicron,” said Koike, adding that holidaymakers can spread the disease.
Retail sales gained 1.9% in November since last year, which the government showed on Monday, faster than economists predicted to gain 1.7% and 0.9% in October.
Oil sales rose 29.2% in November since last year, due to rising commodity prices, boosting the overall market. Car sales dropped by 14.1% due to a shortage of bottles and sales of electronics dropped by 10.6% with a decrease in demand for home appliances.
Compared to the previous month, retail sales rose 1.2% in November on seasonally changing levels, after a 1.0% decline in October.
After the government stepped up its approach in September, daily COVID-19 cases in Japan dropped by less than one million people earlier this month.
No restrictions have been lifted, other than to impose strict limits to prevent the spread of the new version of Omicron.
The third world economy is expected to rise by 6.1% year-on-year from the 3.6% decline in July-September, according to a recent Reuters economic survey.
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