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MNI (London)
--Japan Feb Econ Watchers Current Index 27.4; Jan 41.9 
--Japan Feb Watchers Outlook Index 24.6; Jan 41.8 
--Japan Govt Lowers View: Conditions Worsening Rapidly On Coronavirus
     TOKYO (MNI) - Japan's current sentiment index posted a first fall in 4
month in February, strongly weighed by the entertainment sector, retail sales
and services, a key government survey released Monday showed.
     The survey shows whether respondents with jobs most sensitive to economic
conditions -- taxi and truck drivers, department-store sales staff and
restaurant and shop owners -- think economic conditions have improved or
worsened over the last three months.
     These are the key points from the latest Economy Watchers Survey, conducted
by the Cabinet Office between February 25 and February 29, after the impact of
the coronavirus worsened.
     --The Economy Watchers sentiment index for Japan's current economic climate
fell 14.5 points to 27.4 in February a seasonally adjusted basis, after rising
2.2 points to 41.9 in January. 
     --The Watchers outlook index for two to three months ahead showed the third
straight drop in February, slumping 17.2 points to 24.6 after falling 3.7 points
to 41.8 in January. 
     --The Cabinet Office lowered its overall economic assessment based on the
Economy Watchers Survey, saying, "conditions are worsening rapidly due to the
impact of the coronavirus," noting that "conditions will worsen further."
--MNI Tokyo Bureau; tel: +81 90-2175-0040; email:
--MNI London Bureau; tel: +44 203-586-2225; email:
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