Japan vice economy minister: Economy remains on firm footing after tax hike

Japanese Vice Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said on Thursday that the economy remains on a firm footing after the April 1 sales tax hike and that the impact of the higher consumption tax was within expectations.

A pick-up in capital spending and an improvement in job market conditions will help the economy stay on track for a moderate recovery, Nishimura said.

Nishimura was speaking to reporters after the government cut its overall economic view due to a pullback in demand caused by the April 1 sales tax hike, its first downgrade since late 2012.

He said investors should focus on the real state of economy rather than fretting over additional monetary stimulus by the Bank of Japan and added that the government and the BOJ share the view on the economy and financial environment.

(Reporting by Tetsushi Kajimoto)