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Japanese GDP exceeds expectations with 5.9% rise

Japanese GDP exceeds expectations with 5.9% rise

Japanese GDP grew at an annualised rate of 5.9% during the first quarter of 2014, surpassing the expectations of many economists.

The surge was driven by a strong domestic consumption ahead of the sales tax increase in April and was much more positive than expected. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg had estimated that GDP would on average increase by 4% at an annualised rate.

It is likely to mark an important milestone as prime minister Shinzo Abe (pictured) seeks to implement the third arrow of his wide-reaching reforms, known as 'Abenomics', which aim to stimulate growth and inflation.

It marks the sixth month that GDP has expanded and the strongest since mid-2011 when output rebounded in the wake of the the tsunami and earthquake.

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