Japan October core machinery orders rise, beating expectations

By By Minami Funakoshi Features Reuters

Heavy machineries are seen next to a subway train at a construction site in Tokyo, Japan, March 13, 2016. REUTERS/Yuya Shino (Copyright Reuters 2016)

Japan's core machinery orders rose 4.1 percent in October from the previous month, Cabinet Office data showed on Monday, in a tentative sign of a pickup in capital expenditure. [JPMORD=ECI]

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The rise in core orders, a highly volatile data series regarded as an indicator of capital spending in the coming six to nine months, compared with economists' median estimate of a 1.0 percent increase.

Compared with a year earlier, core orders, which exclude those of ships and electrical equipment, fell 5.6 percent in October, versus expectations of a 4.5 percent decline.

Japanese policymakers are counting on capital spending to foster sustainable growth in the world's third largest economy.

Capital expenditure fell in the July-September quarter for the first time in nearly four years, in a worrying sign that uncertainty over economic outlook is eroding companies' confidence.

Japan's economy also grew much slower than initially estimated in the third quarter as capital expenditure dried up and companies ran down inventories, renewing concerns about Japan's growth prospects.

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(Reporting by Minami Funakoshi; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim and Eric Meijer)