Japan's jobless rate falls to 2.8% in June


The Japanese bonds climbed Friday after the country's consumer price-led inflation index (CPI) for the month of June, matched market expectations.

Also on Friday, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said the unemployment rate in Japan dropped to 2.8 percent in June, down from 3.1 percent in the previous month.

All readings remain very weak, but for a nation that has been consistently battling deflationary forces for close to three decades, the fact that these readings are either flat or slightly higher year-on-year is a positive outcome nonetheless.

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In a fresh sign that labor is in short supply, the job-to-applicant ratio for regular workers stood at 1.01, rising above 1 for the first time since comparable data became available in 2004. This means that 151 positions were available for every 100 job seekers.

Other data released today was also relatively strong. Retail sales are tipped to add 0.4% on month and 2.4% on year following the 1.5% monthly decline and the 2.1% yearly gain in May.

The government report also showed that inflation-adjusted wages edged up by 0.6 percent from a year earlier, marking the first increase in four months.