It was the fourth straight quarterly expansion of the gross domestic product for the world's third-largest economy, the Cabinet Office said in its preliminary estimate. The July-September quarter also registered a 0.3 percent growth.
Japan's exports grew 0.4 percent in the October-December quarter after decreasing 0.7 percent in the July-September quarter, due mainly to increased demand in emerging Asian countries, Kyodo News reported.
The Financial Times reported analysts had expected the fourth quarter to show a 0.7 percent growth. The newspaper said while exports grew 0.4 percent during the quarter, imports had jumped 3.5 percent during the same period.
Domestic consumption, which accounts for about 60 percent of Japan's GDP, however, rose 0.5 percent.
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