TOKYO—Japan’s economy grew slightly in the second quarter of 2021 thanks to increasing global demand and better-than-expected private spending, but a resurgence of Covid-19 infections may limit further recovery.
The world’s third-largest economy has struggled this year to recover from last year’s Covid-19 downturn, while other advanced nations, including the U.S., have recorded solid rebounds. The U.S. economy has already recovered its pre-pandemic size.
Tokyo and other cities are in a state of emergency until at least the end of August as a wave of Covid-19 Delta-variant infections sweeps the country.
In the April-June quarter, the Japanese economy expanded 0.3%, or an annualized 1.3%, after contracting in the previous quarter. Economists described the growth as sluggish. Gross domestic product, a measure of the economy’s total output, remains below its pre-pandemic level.