Japan's service sector sentiment falls to lowest in 3 years

Source: Xinhua| 2019-06-10 17:20:00|Editor: ZX
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TOKYO, June 10 (Xinhua) -- Sentiment in Japan's service sector in May worsened from a month earlier to a near three-year low on concerns over the future course of the global economy, the government said in a report on Monday.

The monthly Economy Watchers survey's diffusion index, in which a score of more than 50 means people view current economic conditions in a positive light, fell 1.2 points from April to 44.1, marking the lowest level since June 2016, the Cabinet Office said.

Based on the latest survey, the Cabinet Office maintained its assessment of sentiment stating that, "The economy has shown some weakness in its recovery."

An electronic machinery maker polled in the government survey said that sales had slumped in May owing to a drop in demand caused by protectionist policies, including the United States' politicization of tariffs on overseas imports.

A job listing publication surveyed said that less recruitment advertisements had been placed by firms in the manufacturing sector, despite Japan's increasingly tight labor market.

In addition, the entertainment industry, including bars and restaurants noted a drop in patronage in the recording period, according to one renowned restaurant, as customers reined-in spending after splurging during the 10-day Golden Week holidays through May 6.

The Cabinet Office also said Monday that conditions in the service sector would continue to worsen in the coming months, with the sentiment index for coming economic conditions dropping 2.8 points from a month earlier to 45.6, marking the fourth successive month of decline.

"There are concerns observed about situations overseas," the Cabinet Office said, with reference to the latest sentiment index for coming economic conditions.

The survey released Monday showed that sentiment dropped markedly in May, with the reading remaining below the boom-or-bust 50 line meaning that, overall, more people polled felt conditions had worsened in comparison to the previous three months.

The survey was conducted between May. 25 and 31, and polled 2,050 workers across Japan.