Private consumption is 56 percent of Japan’s GDP, so understanding where people are spending and what they’re buying is essential to have a clear picture of what’s going on in the world’s third-biggest economy. That’s true not just for the government, but also for businesses and people.
But the government data on spending by households has long been seen as suspect, with a preponderance of older people in the survey, and under-reporting of online shopping at places like Amazon.com Inc. or Rakuten Inc.
To fill that gap, a venture firm has started using credit card transaction data to show consumption trends. Nowcast Inc., a financial-technology venture formed in 2015 out of the University of Tokyo, started releasing new consumption indicators created with JCB Co., a Japanese credit card issuer.
Read more... click here.