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MNI (London)
     TOKYO (MNI) - The Bank of Japan's Consumption Activity Index posted a
second straight m/m rise in December, up 0.3% on a seasonally adjusted basis
following a 2.3% gain in November, data released Friday showed.
     The rise came after the downwardly revised gain in November November and a
downwardly revised fall of 9.5% in October.
     The data showed private consumption continues to recover gradually after
the post-tax hike drop in October but the spending lacked momentum.
     The BOJ's latest assessment is that "private consumption has been
increasing moderately, albeit with fluctuations due to such effects as of the
consumption tax hike, against the background of steady improvement in the
employment and income situation."
     The index for the October-December period fell 4.3% q/q following +1.0% in
the first quarter.
     The BOJ's Consumption Activity Index is designed to forecast revised
private consumption, not a preliminary estimate.
     Household spending data by the government, which fluctuates sharply
month-on-month, fell 1.7% m/m in December for the first drop in two months
following a 2.6% gain in November and an 11.5% fall in October.
--MNI Tokyo Bureau; tel: +81 90-2175-0040; email: hiroshi.inoue@marketnews.com
--MNI London Bureau; tel: +44 203-586-2225; email: les.commons@marketnews.com
[TOPICS: MAJDS$,M$A$$$,M$J$$$]
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-3812 | les.commons@marketnews.com