seasonally adjusted jobless rate rose for the first time in five
months in March 2010, while prices dropped for the thirteenth
consecutive month. The nation's core consumer price index (CPI),
which excludes prices of fresh food, declined 1.2% from a year
earlier. Prices fell nearly across the board, from fuel to furniture.
Deflation can hamper economic growth by depressing company profits,
sparking wage cuts and causing consumers to postpone purchases.
It also can increase debt burdens. The core CPI for the Tokyo
area, seen as a barometer of future price trends nationwide,
retreated 1.9% in April.
Force Survey Monthly Results for March 2010
These survey results, released by the Ministry of Health, Labour
and Welfare on March 30, showed the following:
The number of employed persons in March 2010 was 62.1 million,
a year-on-year decrease of 350,000.
The number of unemployed persons in March 2010 was 3.5 million,
a year-on-year increase of 150,000. The seasonally adjusted
unemployment rate was 5.0%.
| (10,000 persons)
|Population aged 15 years or over
| Employed persons
| Unemployed persons
|Not in labour force
|Labour force participation rate (%)
|Employment rate (%)
|Unemployment rate (%)
|Unemployment rate, seasonally
(3) Average ratio of job offers to job seekers
The average ratio of job offers to job seekers in March 2010
stood at 0.49, slightly better than the 0.02 of a month earlier.
The figure means that there were 49 job offers for every 100
Income and Expenditure Monthly Survey March 2010
The results of this survey, released by the Ministry of Internal
Affairs and Communications on March 30, showed the following:
(1) Expenditure of two-or-more-person households
The average monthly consumption expenditure per household (two
or more persons) for March 2010 was 319,991 yen, up 4.4% in
real terms over the previous year.
(2) Income and expenditure of workers' households
The average monthly income per household stood at 439,410 yen,
up 0.4% in real terms over the previous year. Average consumption
expenditure was 352,552 yen, up 3.6% in real terms over the
previous year. This figure represents a key indicator of private
consumption, which accounts for about 60% of Japan's economy.
Production in March
Industrial production in March increased 0.3% over the previous
month, showing a rise for the first time in two months. Industrial
production was up 30.7% over the previous year. The seasonally
adjusted index in March was 94.0.
Industries that mainly contributed to the increase were electrical
machinery, transport equipment, and iron and steel, in that order.
Commodities that mainly contributed to the increase were large
passenger cars, metal oxide semiconductor ICs (memories), and
internal combustion engines for industry, in that order.
According to the Survey of Production Forecast in Manufacturing,
production was expected to increase 3.7% in April and decrease
0.3% in May.