Japans economy grew at the fastest pace on record in the third quarter, rebounding sharply from its biggest postwar slump, as improved exports and consumption helped the country emerge from the damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
However, analysts painted the sharp bounceback as a oneoff from the depths of recession, and cautioned that any further rebound in the economy will be moderate as a resurgence in infections at home and abroad clouds the outlook.
The worlds thirdlargest economy expanded an annualised 21.4 in JulySeptember, beating a median market forecast for an 18.9 gain and marking the first increase in four quarters, government data showed on Monday.
It was the biggest increase since comparable data became available in 1980 and followed a 28.8 plunge in the second quarter, when consumption took a hit from lockdown measures to prevent the spread of the virus.
The strong growth in JulySeptember was likely a oneoff rebound from an extraordinary contraction caused by the lockdown steps, said Yoshiki Shinke, chief economist at Daiichi Life Research Institute.
The economy may not fall off a cliff. But given uncertainty over the outlook, I would err on the side of caution in terms of the pace of any recovery, he said.
The rebound was driven largely by a record 4.7 surge in private consumption, as households boosted spending on cars, leisure and restaurants, a government official told a briefing.
External demand also added 2.9 percentage points to gross…