Japan economic growth exceeds expectations

Japan’s economy grew by a better-than-expected 1.1% in the final quarter of last year, according to official figures.
This is the equivalent of an annualised increase of 4.6%.
However, despite the growth in October to December, the economy contracted by 5% over the whole of 2009.
China now rivals Japan for the rank of the world’s second-biggest economy, and is on course to overtake Japan. China’s economy expanded by 8.7% in 2009.
“The Japanese population has become quite sober about themselves and relatively pessimistic about the country’s outlook,” said Takuji Okubo, chief economist at Societe Generale in Tokyo.
Japan’s return to growth has been led by exports, particularly to China, which is now its largest overseas market.

BBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza