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Nippon Yusen K.K. and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd., Japan’s two largest shipping lines, narrowed first-quarter losses as car shipments surged after automakers restored output disrupted by the earthquake and tsunami.

Nippon Yusen said Tuesday it had a ¥1.3 billion deficit in the three months ended June 30, compared with a loss of ¥7.2 billion a year earlier.

Mitsui O.S.K., operator of the world’s largest merchant fleet, said it posted a net loss of ¥5.02 billion, compared with a ¥8.05 billion deficit a year earlier.

Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd., the nation’s No. 3 shipping company, had a net loss of ¥674 million in the first quarter, compared with a ¥3.7 billion deficit a year earlier, the company said Tuesday. The carrier’s sales jumped 12 percent to ¥273.6 billion.

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