Japan Convenience Store Sales Up 1.3 Pct in April

Economy

Tokyo, May 20 (Jiji Press)--Sales at convenience stores in Japan in April rose 1.3 pct from a year earlier to 840.8 billion yen on a same-store basis, up for the sixth straight month, an industry group said Monday.

"Onigiri" rice balls and bread products sold well thanks to many people going out during the cherry blossom season and at the outset of the 10-day break through early May, according to the Japan Franchise Association.

In addition, cigarette sales recovered from a slump caused by the tax increase in October last year.

But sales of ice cream and soft drinks were weak due to a cooler-than-usual weather in the first half of April.

The number of shoppers fell 1.6 pct to 1,355 million, down for the second consecutive month. Meanwhile, per-customer spending grew 3.0 pct to 620.4 yen, extending its rising streak to a sixth month, the association said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press