The average consumption spending by households in October fell 0.1 percent from the year before in price-adjusted real terms, shrinking for the second straight month, the government said Friday.
Households spent ¥284,238, on average, the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry said. The decline reflected a decrease in housing repair costs due to the end of a government incentive program to promote energy-efficient houses.
In addition, spending on dining out fell as the number of weekend days was two days fewer than in October 2011.
But the pace of overall decline was smaller than the median forecast of 0.7 percent in a Jiji Press survey of 23 economic research institutes.
The ministry kept its assessment unchanged from a month before, saying consumption spending is weakening.
The average monthly income at wage-earning households in October increased a real 0.9 percent to ¥482,101, up for the third consecutive month.