Japanese Retail Sales, or Retail Trade as it's referred to by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Tourism came in well under expectations early Wednesday, with headline annualized Retail Sales for the year ended December growing by just 2.1% compared to the forecast 5.1%, falling even further back from the previous period's 5.3%.
Seasonally-adjusted December Japanese Retail Trade declined by 0.8% MoM, compared to November's print of 1.0%.
The USD/JPY is ticking down into 147.40 immediately after release after the pair caught a downside bounce from the 200-hour Simple Moving Average (SMA) mid-Tuesday just shy of the 148.00 handle.
The Retail Trade released by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry captures the aggregate sales made through a business location (usually a store) in which the principal activity is the sale of merchandise and related services to the general public, for household or personal consumption. Consumer spending is a key important indicator for the Japanese economy. A high reading is positive for the JPY, while a low reading is negative.