History repeats as sales tax hike pushes Japan toward recession

Japanese housewife Matsuko Mitsui had been meaning to buy a new air conditioner for years, but it took the looming sales tax hike in October to spur the 64-year-old to finally make the purchase.Like many people in the country, she isn’t planning to splash out again anytime soon, leaving the economy teetering on the edge of recession. And that was before the spreading coronavirus gave yet more cause for caution.“These days, I really scrutinize the price tags,” Mitsui said. She isn’t her family’s breadwinner, but she says the heightened price consciousness she senses in herself and in people lik…

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