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Japan's consumer confidence index posted the second straight m/m drop in May as three of four components weakened, prompting the Cabinet Office to note the slowing pace of recovery and lower its assessment for the first time since January.
The latest Consumer Confidence Survey released Monday showed the index fell to 34.1 in May from 34.7 in April. An official at the Cabinet Office said the drop was small due to some positive factors, such as hope for a faster vaccine rollout and the rise in disposable income due to lower mobile phone charges. Consumers were less optimistic about overall economic well-being, income conditions and the labour market situation while the willingness to buy durable goods was unchanged.
The share of respondents projecting consumer price gains fell to 74.9% in May after rising to 76.0% in April. The share of respondents forecasting lower prices rose to 7.3% in May from April's 6.3%. The sub-index on asset prices, not included in calculating overall consumer confidence, stood at 39.8 in May, unchanged from April.