Japan economy grows

Japan's economy grew by 3.0 per cent in the first quarter of 1996 compared with the previous three months - the strongest quarterly performance since the beginning of 1973 before the impact was felt of the first oil shock. Gross domestic product rose by an annual rate 12.7 per cent. Growth was boosted by almost every category, from consumption to capital expenditure to government spending and housing investment. Weak exports and strong imports were the only negative factors on growth.